Finding the best Champagne under $25 can involve a search for both Champagne and sparkling wine. You don't need a wedding or a New Year's Eve celebration to uncork a bottle of bubbly. In fact, Champagne and other sparkling wines can put a bounce and swagger in your step on any humdrum day.
8 Champagnes and Sparkling Wines Under $25
As a general rule, you may need look hard to find a French Champagne for less than $25, but it is not an impossible task; just don't expect a Dom Perignon. In order to find a decent bottle of French Champagne that costs less than $25, you'll likely need to purchase a 375 mL (half) bottle. If you want bubbles but don't need a French Champagne, then the best sparkling wine for under $25 will likely be French sparklers from outside of the Champagne region (called Crémant), Prosecco from Italy, Cava from Spain, or other sparkling wines from around the world.
1. Montaudon Brut Champagne 375 mL
If what you really want is a French Champagne, then the Montaudon Brut 375 mL bottle will bring you in on budget (it costs around $23) and provide a classic, dry French Champagne made using the méthode champenoise. It's a non-vintage Champagne with notes of citrus, peach, and hazelnut with fine bubbles. Wine Spectator rated this wine 90 points.
2. Mailly Brut Reserve Grand Cru Champagne 375 mL
This half-bottle of French Champagne has notes of biscuits and vanilla with a hint of cherry jam. It's a dry, non-vintage Champagne with fine bubbles. The half-bottle costs around $20, and it's well-received by critics. The Mailly Brut Reserve received a 91-point rating from Wine Spectator, and a 375 mL bottle costs around $20.
3. Lucien Albrecht Crémant d'Alsace Brut Rosé 750 mL
It's French, and it's made using the méthode champenoise, but this wine is not considered a Champagne because the grapes are grown and the wine produced outside of France's Champagne region. However, this the Lucien Albrecht dry rosé Crémant only costs $24 for a full, 750 mL bottle, and it's well-received by critics. The wine is 100% Pinot Noir, and critics' ratings range from 90 to 93 points. Expect notes of strawberry and bright acidity with fine bubbles.
4. Maison Roche de Bellene Bellenos Crémant de Bourgogne Brut 750 mL
This dry white nonvintage sparkler comes from the Burgundy region in France and is a tempting blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Maison Roche de Bellene Bellenos Crémant de Bourgogne Brut costs around $22 for a 750 mL bottle and received a 91-point rating from Wilfred Wong. It's aromatic with notes of biscuit and delicate florals.
5. Gloria Ferrer Sonoma Brut 750 mL
The Sonoma Brut from Gloria Ferrar is an American sparkling wine produced in Sonoma County. A 750 mL bottle of this non-vintage sparkling wine costs around $22. It contains a blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes. Wine Enthusiast rated the wine 90 points and Wine Spectator awarded it a 91-point rating. It's a creamy sparkling wine with the aroma of pears.
6. Codorniu Anna de Codorniu Cava Blanc de Blanc 750 mL
The Codorniu Anna de Codorniu Cava Blanc de Blanc is a Spanish Cava with tropical pineapple notes and refined bubbles. Expect to pay around $15 for a 750 mL bottle. James Suckling rated this non-vintage Cava 91 points.
7. Santa Margherita Prosecco Superiore 750 mL
This Prosecco from Santa Margherita is affordable and delicious. A 750 mL bottle of the non-vintage dry Prosecco costs around $22 and receives ratings in the lower 90-point region from wine critics. Expect notes of apples and pears combined with crisp acidity.
8. Gruet Blanc de Noirs 750 mL
If New Mexico doesn't immediately pop to mind as a great place for sparkling wine, then the Gruet Blanc de Noirs might surprise you. It's a dry blend of 75% Pinot Noir and 25% Chardonnay produced in Albuquerque, and the non-vintage dry sparkling wine costs around $18 for a 750 mL bottle. Critics like it; the wine receives ratings of 90 points from various critics. It's a creamy, finessed sparkling wine with berry flavors and aromas and a lovely pale pink color.
Tips for Finding Affordable Champagne and Sparkling Wine
Finding affordable French Champagne under $25 for a full-sized bottle is a nearly impossible task. However, there are a number of high-quality sparkling wines from around the world that rival Champange in flavor and style, but they are far more affordable. Consider the following tips for finding sparkling wines under $25.
- If you want true, French Champagne, choose non-vintage and purchase half bottles (375 mL) or splits (187 mL).
- Look for sparkling wine made in France outside of the Champagne region. These wines are called Crémant (usually labeled as Crémant de Bourgogne, Crémant d'Alsace, Crémant de Loire, etc.), and they are made using the traditional méthode champenoise.
- Non-vintage is usually less expensive than vintage, regardless of where the sparkling wine comes from in the world. Non-vintage sparkling wines contain a blend of vintages for a consistent and balanced character.
- Prosecco is a delicious, affordable alternative to Champagne. It's produced in Italy, and you can find many vintage and non-vintage 750 mL bottles for under $25.
- Spain's answer to Champagne is Cava, and it usually costs a fraction of the price of French Champagne but is of similar quality.
- New World sparkling wines from the United States, South America, Australia, and New Zealand also have plenty of delicious, affordable options that tend to be far less costly than French Champagne.
Bubbles for Less Than $25
It's a challenge to find a good quality Champagne or sparkling wine under $25, but it's not impossible. Consider broadening your search to include domestic-made and New World sparkling wines, which offer the elegance of bubbly without the higher price tag. While a true French Champagne is expensive, occasionally it may also be worth the splurge to celebrate a special event.