The story was originally published by the Philadelphia City Paper  on December 27, 2006.  

Alt Weekly

NYE Toasts Uncorked

Author: Amy Strauss

1 Chimay Cinq Cents. Home Sweet Homebrew owner George Hummel recommends toasting with a bottle of hard-nosed Belgian beer. Aside from his home-brewed George’s Fault, he’ll be pouring frosty glasses of Chimay Cinq Cents, a hazy golden pale with a fine head and pungent hop aroma. Muscat and raisins add robust flavor, making each gulp of the warm bitter linger extra long.

2 Italian Prosecco. If anyone’s nose deserves insurance, it’s wine educator  O. For season’s sippings, she recommends Italy’s prosecco, a lemony, straw-colored sparkling wine. Sometimes combined with a smidgen of pinot blanc or pinot grigio grapes, this bubbly’s overtones reveal citrus, melon, almond and honey.

3 Unoaked Marlborough. It’s all about the pairings, says Chaddsford Winery owner Eric Miller, whose holiday feasts center on big ol’ hunks of beef. He’s particularly fond of this Kim Crawford New Zealand chardonnay, which he says has a rich, oily character and pleasantly tart aftertaste.

4 Saison DuPont. B**F**, director of wine education at the Wine School of Philadelphia, loves bottle-conditioned Saison DuPont ale. A true party pleaser, it’s posh, dry and spicy with notable floral scents. The stocky bottle’s cork and cage even mock champagne decorum. Locally, it’s available at Monk’s Cafe.

5 Veuve Clicquot Champagne Brut. Veuve Clicquot, most notable for its screaming yellow labels and partnership with the Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy Co., boasts a stellar rep for a full-bodied sparkler. Chef for You president Tony Lawrence likes its complex apple, citrus and caramel flavors and crisp, zingy finish. Try it with seafood or orange marmalade-topped French toast.