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Five Cheerful Alternatives to Champagne

Written by: Chloe Thomas



Time to read 2 min

Who says celebrations need to break the bank? If you're a wine lover looking for a budget-friendly alternative to Champagne, we've got you covered. Whether you're celebrating the holidays or a special occasion or want to spice up your weekend, here are five delicious and affordable sparkling wines that will make you (and your taste buds) dance.

1. Cava (Spain)


Cava is a sparkling wine from Spain that's incredibly popular for its affordability and quality. Made using the traditional method like Champagne, Cava is a mix of native Spanish grapes such as Macabeo, Xarel-lo, and Parellada. The result is a dry, fruity wine with a light fizz and a refreshing finish. Perfect for sipping on a hot summer day or pairing with tapas, Cava is an excellent alternative to Champagne that won't break the bank.

2. Prosecco (Italy)


Now, unless you've been living under a rock, you've likely heard of Prosecco - a sparkling wine from Italy that's become a worldwide sensation in recent years. However, did you know it's made using the Charmat method (a sparkling winemaking process that traps bubbles in wine via carbonation in large steel tanks)? This gives it a unique, fresh taste and a delicate and persistent mousse while keeping production costs down (compared to Champagne). Prosecco is usually sweeter than Champagne and tends to be less complex. Still, it's an excellent choice if you're looking for a light, fizzy wine with refreshing acidity and gentle aromas of citrus and apple.

3. Crémant (France)

Bottles of  Crémant
Image from Wine Enthusiast

Crémant is a family of sparkling wines from France similar to Champagne but made outside the Champagne region. You can find Crémant in different areas such as Alsace, Burgundy, the Loire, and the Jura; each part lends its personality to the wine. Crémant is typically made using the traditional method (the same sparkling wine production method as in Champagne whereby wine undergoes a second fermentation process in the bottle to produce those bubbles of carbon dioxide) and blends local grape varieties with Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, or Pinot Blanc. You can find different styles of Crémant, but they all offer great value for money and are perfect for celebrations.

4. Sekt (Germany)

Sekt is a German sparkling wine that can be made using the traditional (Champagne method) or the tank method (where the second fermentation takes place in a tank rather than a bottle). What's fun is that Sekt can be made from grape varieties, such as Riesling or Müller-Thurgau, and can be either dry or sweet. Sekt is an excellent alternative to Champagne if you're looking for something with a crisp, zesty acidity and a fruity finish.

5. Sparkling Wine (England)

English Sparkling Wine

The burgeoning English sparkling wine industry has been making waves in recent years, gaining recognition for its high-quality sparkling wines that rival traditional regions' offerings. These wines are primarily produced in the southern regions of England using the traditional method and the same grape varieties as Champagne: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier. English Sparkling Wines are known for their bright acidity and complex flavours, often characterized by notes of apple, pear, and citrus, along with toasty, nutty undertones. With global warming positively affecting the English wine industry, the potential for this sparkling wine continues to rise, making it a worthy contender in the world of sparkling wines.

Celebrating on a budget doesn't mean sacrificing quality or taste. Plenty of sparkling wines worldwide provide excellent value for money and rival Champagne in flavour and quality. Whether you prefer the crisp acidity of Cava, the fruity aromas of Prosecco, the complex flavours of Crémant, the zesty freshness of Sekt, or the rivalry of English sparkling wine, there's a budget-friendly alternative to Champagne that will suit your palate. So, get ready to pop that cork and raise a toast without breaking the bank. Cheers!