What to Drink on New Year's Eve? Make it Rare

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We”re not usually huge wine snobs here at ES, but New Year”s Eve is that one night when you can”t show up to the party with a jug of Carlo Rossi and expect everyone to cheer. And sometimes even Champagne in a can isn”t enough to impress. So we”ve asked a genuine vino expert to share some tips on how to kick your NYE wine selection up just a little bit.

I recently stumbled across MCF Rare Wine, Ltd., a bespoke wine shop in Manhattan”s West Village offering a carefully chosen collection of wines and an unapologetic attitude that emphasizes old-fashioned customer service and honesty. You won’t find a bottle of Sutter Home or Yellow Tail here, nor the obligatory hard liquor mini-bottles for your next flight. What you will witness is owner Matt Franco researching the next great find, unpacking a delivery, printing shelf labels, sweeping the front stoop—and if you’re really lucky—offering his soft-spoken but decidedly opinionated take on any of the eighty or so wines that adorn the tiny shop. Matt offers ES-ers an inside track for that perfect New Year’s bottle that will ensure 2011 is a year to remember:

ES: Last year everyone recognized my cheap bottle of Prosecco, in spite of the foil bag and curly ribbon. Their reaction—“Oh, I’ve had that before (sigh).” Thoughts for a special bubbly that won’t break the bank?
MCF: Domaine Taille aux Loups Montlouis Petillant “Triple Zero” NV $25
Winemaker Jacky Blot does some amazing stuff in the Loire Valley in France and this is one of his most interesting creations. Made from fully ripe Chenin Blanc grapes, the “Triple Zero” refers to the fact that there is no sugar added at any of the three traditional times during production. Crisp, aromatic and expressive, this is more interesting than Prosecco and more wallet-friendly than Champagne.

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