Three Sparkling Champagne Alternatives That Won’t Eat Your Savings

by Oct 14, 2020White Wine0 comments

Without a doubt, champagne enjoys a lot of spotlight as the go-to bottle for special occasions. However, the reality is that it makes those occasions incredibly more expensive for a lot of people.

What most folks don’t know is that there are other drinks that have the nice fizz and sparkle of champagne but won’t take more than half of your party budget. One primary reason for this is really the method. It is also a matter of official recognition. Champagne originated from the wine region of the same name, and the grapes that make it so unique can only be raised in the region’s distinct soil and climate.

In contrast, cheaper alternatives come from many parts of Europe and generally use what is called the Charmat Method. This process is faster, generally uses only one stage of fermentation and uses the same modern carbonation method as those used in soda making.

Their aging process is also not as long as that of champagne. And while that has its disadvantages, it makes it possible to include a wider variety of more affordable sparkling wines for cost-conscious party planners without sacrificing quality and taste.

Now, there is no doubt you may have already seen different names for these sparkling wines that it might get confusing. You may not even want to pick a bottle purely because it’s the cheapest (at least not without knowing what to expect).

To that end, here is a quick guide to these sparkling wine alternatives and some of their differences.


Prosecco

Prosecco is noticeably sweeter than champagne, but its price can go as far down as being a quarter of champagne’s price. That makes it an even bigger bargain for those who like their wine more on the sugary side while still being able to confidently serve something with champagne’s classy, bubbly aesthetic.


Moscato

Moscato is actually a lot sweeter than even Prosecco and it is paired exclusively with desserts. On the other hand, it can be a bit more expensive too. On a more interesting note though, Moscato has surprisingly less alcohol content and could be the best option if you are serving light drinkers.


Cava

Cava is widely known as a Spanish variant of champagne, but that’s not the only thing it’s got going for it. The process of making it is actually as close to méthode traditionnelle as it can get without racking up the cost. Even using a wider variety of grapes which are not normally used in champagne making. This leads to Cava being the less sweet among the alternatives and closer to the dryness of real champagne.


Of course, there are certainly finer and subtler differences between these types (and even among brands of the same type). But if all you’re looking for is a nice bottle of bubbly, sparkling wine for a party, then any of the above three is a great choice all while still leaving room in your budget for other things to enjoy your wonderful celebration.