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The East Bay has a healthy dose of destination-worthy wine bars that showcase domestic and international bottles, flights and wines by the glass, from Residual Sugar and Va De Vi, both in Walnut Creek, to Oakland’s acclaimed Snail Bar and Daytrip, which specialize in natural wines.

But the area hasn’t had a place specifically designed for bubbly-sipping, until this year.

Fizz, a Champagne bar located in Sacramento, is making its way to 1652 Bonanza St., the former Sweetwaters Coffee & Tea in downtown Walnut Creek, with a planned fall opening, says Fizz founder Raymond James. When it opens, hopefully in September, Fizz Walnut Creek will feature more than 150 different Champagnes by the bottle, 25 different Champagnes and sparkling wines by the glass and a menu of flights with names such as “Baller” and “Champagne in the Membrane.”

Fizz, the Sacramento bubbly bar, is opening in Walnut Creek, making it the East Bay’s first Champagne bar. (Raymond Irvwin) 

Like the original in Sacramento, Fizz will also offer a menu of bubbly-friendly bites, like oysters, caviar and duck fat fries.

Irwin, a certified sommelier, says he wants to change people’s perceptions of Champagne and sparkling wine as a special-occasion beverage. One of the ways he plans to do that is with a pick-up or delivery Champagne club, which gives members access to unique and boutique bottles not available to the general public. The Sacramento Fizz opened four years ago and boasts a 450-member club.

Members also get store discount for all purchases, access to invitation-only events, and opportunities to accompany Irwin on his sourcing trips to the Champagne region. He says locals can get on that list for Walnut Creek before the bar opens and receive access to pre-opening parties. To learn more, visit

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Anthony Joshua reveals only reason he lost to Oleksandr Usyk in first fight is due to heavyweight rival being southpaw

ANTHONY JOSHUA claims he only lost to Oleksandr Usyk due to the Ukraine ace being a southpaw.

AJ saw his heavyweight world-title dominance go up in smoke in September, when the left-hander outboxed him.

2AJ reckons he would have 'smoked' Usyk if the Ukrainian fought orthodoxCredit: Getty 2Joshua is readying himself for the sequalCredit:

But the Watford ace, 32, bizarrely said the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium loss — despite Usyk’s undisputed cruiserweight reign and 335-15 amateur record — was purely down to his stance.

The London 2012 Olympic legend said: “Fighting a leftie is a nightmare and he is a good one as well.

“He is good — but if he was an orthodox fighter I’d have smoked him, 100 per cent.

“But with this leftie nonsense it’s just different, they set you up differently.

READ MORE IN BOXINGTRUE HERO AJ reveals respect for Usyk for defending Ukraine ahead of desert dust-up

“If you are a good leftie you have a good chance of making it in boxing, I reckon.”

When Usyk moved up from the 14st 4lbs cruiser division he cleaned out, he revealed 16st was his ideal weight up at heavy.

The father-of-three was 15st 7lbs for the points win over Derek Chisora and 15st 11lbs for the Spurs schooling of AJ.

In the most recent pictures from his Dubai camp - where he has sparred giant orthodox monster perfect for imitating AJ - Usyk looks huge.

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But AJ insists his new partnership with trainer Robert Garcia, Loughborough gym and fresh killer mindset will help secure him victory by maximising his height, reach and weight advantages.

When asked if the speculation was in fact the plan, he said: “Yes, it’s evident isn’t it, it’s not a secret.

“They are things that I need to use but it’s easier said than done so we work on it.

“That’s why training camps are so challenging and why you usually see a fighter straight on the beach after a fight, it’s draining.

“It’s evident that I am stronger and bigger and - if I can impose my strengths on him - I will have a better chance of winning the fight.”

Nobody in their right mind can criticise Joshua for his career so far, he didn’t even pick up a pair of gloves until he was 18 yet has made British boxing a mega-money industry with elite opponents.

But he has been stunned by the power of Andy Ruiz Jr and bamboozled by the skill of Usyk.

And he seems so sure he has the right gamplan to complete his second rematch revenge mission, after making a hash of his idea to outfox-the-fox first time around.

“I always predicted, at the start of my career, that I would be the sort of fighter who had to suffer defeats and go down this route, because of the challenges I take,” he rightly said.

“I like taking good challenges and I have even done that as an amateur, always straight in the deep end.

“I didn’t have a winning mindset for Usyk, I didn’t think ‘I want to go in there and smash him’. I wanted to compete with him, at boxing and see how good I was at it.

“He won and became a pound-for-pound great. But what happens on August 20 if I win, do I become a pound-for-pound great now?”

Every British boxing fan in the world should hope he does - somehow.

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