Tuesday, November 23, 2010

3 Alternatives to Champagne

This holiday season, you might want to celebrate by popping a bottle (or deux) of Champagne.  And who could blame you?  There's just something about the bubbly French drink that brings instant glamour and fun to any occasion.  But the price of most Champagnes - generally $50 or more for a bottle - is not always budget friendly.  When you want the sparkling with out the sticker shock, try one of these glamour-adding alternatives. 

1. Cava
This sparkling wine from Spain is very drinkable and often very reasonably priced.  You can easily find bottles for less that $20, and sometimes even closer to $10.  Keep an eye out for Cava on a bar or restaurant's wines by the glass list as well.  I often see it there next to much more expensive glasses of Champagne. 

2.  Crémant de Loire
If you prefer to buy your bubbly from somewhere inside l'Héxagone, look no further than the Loire Valley.  Vineyards there make Crémant, a sprarkling wine whose production methods and aging process are controlled by French appellation law.  Crémants are produced in many regions of France, and even in Luxembourg, but the Loire Valley is France's second-largest producer of sparkling wine outside of Champagne. Like Cava, there are bottles to be had for around $20 or less. 

3.  American Sparkling Wine

If you're an American, why not support homegrown vineyards this year by finding a domestic option for your bubbly toasts?  If you're not an American, why not try a wine you might not have previously considered?  You just might be surprised at the quality of sparklings to be found stateside.  This Thanksgiving, I'll be celebrating with a delicious $30 bottle of Scintilla, a Brut sparkling wine from Veritas Vineyard and Winery, located near Charlottesville, Virginia. 

À votre santé!


Wade said...

Great suggestions but you missed my favorite...prosecco.

Greg Wesson said...

Aw, Wade beat me to it! I was just about to mention Prosecco as another option as well.

Zhu said...

You guys know more about French wines than I do :-D

Tanya said...

@Wade, @Greg, You're both right: Prosecco is an excellent option as well. I don't know why I don't reach for it more often Thanks for giving it a shout out!

PNR Status said...

Nice Post.I was just about to mention Prosecco as another option as well.