Desmond Echavarrie

Welcome to The Somm Set. Each month we’ll be sitting down with a guest sommelier and uncovering their guilty pleasures, cellar staples, and everything in between! Follow as they hand-select their favorites from our warehouse, giving you the inside scoop on cellar must-haves!

This month on The Somm Set, we’re excited to feature Desmond Echavarrie, Master Sommelier.  

This week from Desmond Echavarrie:

When you think of Champagne, you probably think of NYE and the universally embraced auditory signal to party down – the iconic pop of the bottle. Concealing that obnoxious sound is an important skill in the early life of a sommelier and it is symbolic. Champagne deserves to be enjoyed as an elegant wine, not the shower of sticky fizz as it’s often relegated in a Vegas night club or at the finish line of racetrack.

Most people just don’t drink great Champagne. That’s because most Champagne is mass-produced. The Champagne region has flourished through the centuries because large houses with aggressive marketing were able to craft the narrative for Champagne as a celebratory luxury. While there is nothing wrong with this, I submit that finding those awe-inspiring grower producer treasures that will enhance your meal and your life is the real cause for celebration. Here are a few that you will want to open quietly with close friends.

Check out the wines below!


Benchmark Wine Group

445 Devlin Road
Napa, CA 94558

Phone: 707.255.3500
Fax: 707.255.3503
SMS: 707.200.4049


Monday-Friday 8:30am-4:30pm
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