Where to drink Champagne this weekend -- with 5 kinds of bacon

CalTech student Dylan Sures on a "Midnight Munchies" run in 2010; a toast with Champagne in Paris.

CalTech student Dylan Sures on a “Midnight Munchies” run in 2010; a toast with Champagne in Paris.

(Jay Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

When bacon freaks and Santa Monica’s Wine Expo get together for a tasting, it can be as wacky as this: five different bacons paired with the same number of Champagnes -- and we’re not talking cheap bubbly, but the real thing.

It happens the second weekend of each month, which means that Friday and Saturday from 5 p.m. until midnight, you can, in the words of the wine shop’s flyer, “experience the mystical bond between top shelf sparkling wine and the glorious meat candy known as artisanal bacon.”

Here’s the lineup of bacons from Bacon Freak, home of the Bacon of the Month Club: Beer Belly Hickory Smoked Beer Flavored Bacon, Porky Lemon Garlic Country Bacon, Boss Hog Honey BBQ Rubbed Bacon, Rocco’s Private Reserve Sun-dried Tomato Bacon and, last but not least, Firecracker Chili Bacon.


The five Champagnes that will be poured are: Jean Laurent Blanc de Blancs Brut, La Caravelle Brut Cuvée Nina, Trouillard Brut Extra Sélection, Barnaut Grand Cru Blanc de Noir and La Caravelle Brut Rosé. These are just a few of the selections from the well-stocked Wine Expo’s Champagne section.

Wine Expo’s Roberto Rogness explains how the tasting works: “We cook up the bacons in advance, keep them warm in a chafing dish and serve them on a plate with smoked olives, spicy nuts and bread. It’s not dinner,” he cautioned. “It’s a tasting. We pour half glasses of the five Champagnes, which adds up to 2 1/2 glasses.” Those who would rather skip the bacon or the tasting can order Champagnes by the glass.

And for the very thirsty and hungry, the wine bar’s regular menu of 17 different wines by the glass (or flight) is also available, along with, among other things, pizza, crostini, lasagna and meatballs with Bolognese sauce.

Wine Expo, 2933 Santa Monica Boulevard, Santa Monica (310) 828-4428; Bacon & Bubbly Fest, $29.95 per person, plus tax and gratuity.

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