Holy Moly, 2021 was weird. Perhaps it seemed especially so after living through the shit-show that was 2020. Maybe life would begin to feel normal again after so much was upended? Alas, if the last two years have taught us anything, it’s that life is never quite normal, it only seems that way to us when things are going relatively smoothly. But life has always been beautiful and brutal and the most we can do is hang on for the ride, enjoy the good times while they last, and go through the rough times with some modicum of strength, calm and courage. Oh, yeah, and wine, too. Wine sure as heck helps! The most memorable wines I personally enjoyed in 2021 were consumed within a somewhat nostalgic and bittersweet context: if we couldn’t always travel with ease, were concerned about political divisiveness, worried about climate change and inflation, and so much more—well, we could at least spend a couple of hours with a trusted friend over a good bottle of wine and share some laughs. My top wines of 2021 list reflects the wines that suspended, at least for a time, any concerns, and brought much pleasure.
Domaine Bousquet Charmat Brut Rosé / Uco Valley, Argentina / $13
Unassuming. Bright. Over-performing.