You don't have to spend a fortune to buy an exceptional sparkling wine. In fact, there are many wonderful options that sell for under $30 per bottle. The key to finding a great budget option is to concentrate your search on wines that offer the best value for the money.
10 Great Values in Sparkling Wines
Great value in a sparkling wine comes from a combination of a well-received sparkler with a low price point. There are plenty of sparkling wines to meet these criteria.
1. Lucien Albrecht Crémant d'Alsace Brut Rosé NV
Listed as one of the Top 5 Affordable Sparkling Wines by Epicurious, where wines from the Alsace region are called "the best value for money in non-Champagne French fizz," the Lucien Albrecht Crémant d'Alsace Brut Rosé NV is an excellent choice. This wine is beautiful inside and out, from its golden pink color to its delightful notes of strawberry and citrus. The grapes are picked by hand and pressed by the cluster. It retails for about $25 a bottle on Wine.com.
2. NV Gruet Brut
Food & Wine lists the NV Gruet Brut as one of the Best $15-and-Under White Wines, calling it "among the best value sparkling wines made anywhere." This wine, which is made from grapes grown in New Mexico, offers crisp notes of green pear. It's a refreshing, dry option that retails for under $20.
3. Mondoro Sparkling Asti Spumante
According to Wine.com, the Mondoro Sparkling Asti Spumante received a 90-point rating from Wine & Spirits and is highly rated by consumers at the website. It is a light, sparkling option that offers a slightly sweet, fruity experience. The pale yellow-green color is attractive as well. This wine retails for about $16.
4. Freixenet Cava Carta Nevada Semi Dry
EveryDay with Rachael Ray included the Freixenet Cava Carta Nevada Semi Dry on its list of The Best Sparkling Wines Under $15. The magazine website called it the best option for toasting since its crisp and fruity flavors are perfect on their own. Cava is usually a very good value in sparkling wine; it's a Spanish sparkler similar to French Champagne and is produced using the same traditional méthode champenoise, but it usually costs a fraction of the price. You'll notice hints of peach and apple as you sip this value wine.
5. Cinzano Asti D.O.C.G.
Also included on EveryDay with Rachael Ray's list of The Best Sparkling Wines Under $15, Cinzano Asti D.O.C.G. is a winner when it comes to sweet sparklers. It's perfect for serving with dessert or sipping when you want a little treat. This fruity option has notes of honey and retails for about $16 per bottle on FineWineHouse.
6. Gloria Ferrer Blanc de Noirs
Wine Spectator gave the Gloria Ferrer Blanc de Noirs a rating of 90, and its $22-per-bottle price makes it an excellent value. This sparkling rose-tinted wine has hints of strawberries, black cherries, and lemons. It is made from Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes, which are pressed as whole clusters to preserve the crisp flavor.
7. Segura Viudas Reserva Heredad
A wonderful Spanish option is the Segura Viudas Reserva Heredad. Also touted as one of the Top 5 Affordable Sparkling Wines by Epicurious, where it is described as "remarkably complex for its price." Offering notes of citrus and brioche, this crisp Cava, or Spanish sparkling wine, is aged for five years. The hand blown bottle with pewter decorations looks impressive as well. It retails for about $20 per bottle.
8. Roederer Estate Brut Anderson Valley NV
The Roederer Estate Brut Anderson Valley NV has racked up the accolades, earning 91 points from Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast and 92 points from The Wine News. It's named a "best value" from the The New York Times 2012 wine panel. The blend of 60% Chardonnay and 40% Pinot Noir gives this sparkling option fruity notes of strawberry and lime. It retails for under $30 per bottle.
9. Treveri Brut Blanc de Blanc Columbia Valley NV
A 91-point rating from Wine Spectator combined with a $15-per-bottle price tag makes the Treveri Brut Blanc de Blanc Columbia Valley NV an exceptional value. This fresh, sparkling wine provides crisp notes of citrus with just a tiny bit of pepper. It's a light, fun choice for any gathering or dinner party.
10. Domaine Ste. Michelle NV Brut
If you're looking for a light sparkling wine that isn't too sweet but isn't super dry either, the Domaine Ste. Michelle NV Brut is a good choice. Wine Enthusiast Magazine heralded it as one of the best sparkling wines you can buy for $15 or less. The blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Gris has apple notes and retails for about $16 on Wine.com.
5 Tips for Finding Values in Sparkling Wines
Want to find your own value bubblies? Consider the following tips.
1. Look Outside of the Champagne Region
Champagne isn't the only region that makes sparkling wines. In France, sparkling wines made using the same method but not made in the Champagne region tend to be more affordable, but they're still super tasty. These wines are called Crémant, and you'll find them labeled for different regions, such as Crémant de Bourgogne or Crémant d'Alsace.
2. Give Prosecco a Try
Prosecco is Italy's premier sparkling wine, and it's typically very affordable. It comes in a range of styles and sweetness, and you usually won't pay much more than $20 per bottle, so it's a great value bubbly.
3. Try a Half-Bottle or Split
If you just need a little sparkling wine, or if you'd like to try a more expensive sparkler but can't stomach the price of a full bottle, then look for half-bottles or splits (1/4 bottle), which have one or two servings but allow you to try a more expensive wine at an affordable price.
4. Think Outside of the Bottle
Bubbly in a can? It's better than you might imagine! For instance, Sofia Blanc de Blancs comes in four 175 mL cans for under $15, and it's pretty tasty stuff. That way, you only open a serving at a time and the rest stays bubbly and cold until you're ready to have some more. Plus, once it's in a Champagne flute, nobody has to know it ever spent time in a can.
5. Look to Up-and-Coming Wine Regions
New World wine regions often have great values in all of their wines because value pricing is helping the world to discover just how good those wines are. Look to regions such as South Africa, New Zealand, and Chile to find some great value sparkling wines.
Exceptional Wine Experience on a Budget
Just as there are many wonderful budget Champagnes, there are lots of great options for non-Champagne sparkling wines. Whether you are celebrating a big event or simply making an ordinary evening a little more special, these wines will provide the experience you want without breaking the bank.