7 Affordable Champagne Brands for Every Budget

Glasses with champagne on the bar counter in a restaurant against a dark background.
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The most wonderful time of the year is upon us, which means there are many toasts to be had. Nothing pairs better with happiness than Champagne, so you’re ready to stock up.

A quick note before you start shopping, Champagne is a winemaking region in northern France. All sparkling wine from this region is — correctly — referred to as Champagne, but other types of bubbly are often — incorrectly — given this label.

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You might be specifically searching for a bottle of Champagne, but if not, you’ll almost definitely come across plenty of sparkling wine. However, no matter what region you focus on, bottles of bubbly can get seriously expensive, but there are plenty of delicious varieties that won’t break the bank. For this list, we will be including some sparkling wines and Champagnes.

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Want to start shopping? Here’s a look at seven affordable bottles of Champagne and sparkling wine you need to try.

1. Gloria Ferrer Sonoma Brut

Critically acclaimed, Gloria Ferrer Sonoma Brut is rated 91 points by Wine Spectator and 90 points by Wine Enthusiast. Crafted from hand-picked grapes, this sparkling wine has been on the market since 1985.

Composed of 85% pinot noir and 15% chardonnay, it is prepared according to the traditional method. When pouring your glass, take a moment to savor its delightful pear aroma. After taking a sip, wait for the creamy aftertaste that will delight your palate.

2. Chandon Brut

A mix of nutty flavors, combined with apple and pear features, Chandon Brut is a classic you don’t want to miss. Accents of citrus spice and notes of almond and caramel finish out this taste that will surely inspire you to refill your glass.

Rated 95 points by Decanter and 92 points by the Somm Journal, this affordable sparkling wine pairs well with anything salty, creamy or nutty, according to the winemaker.

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3. Piper Sonoma Brut

Beloved by critics, Piper Sonoma Brut is rated 92 points by The Tasting Panel Magazine and 90 points by Wine Enthusiast. Delight your palate with flavors of green apple, mandarin orange and brioche.

Mainly composed of chardonnay —  70% — and pinot noir — 20% — it pairs well with crab cakes, sauteed shrimp and sushi, according to the winery website. Another winner from California’s Sonoma County wine region, this budget-friendly sparkling wine is sure to impress.

4. Mumm Napa Blanc de Blancs

Defined as “white of whites,” Mumm Napa Blanc de Blancs is a delightful mix of Chardonnay and pinot gris. The former helps the sparkling wine achieve a bright and elegant citrus tone, while the latter gives it a delicious stone fruit accent that brings out its texture and flavors, according to the winemaker notes.

Not sure what to serve it with? It pairs perfectly with oysters, calamari and salads. Sure to be a hit, this sparkling wine is rated 91 points by Wine Enthusiast and 90 points by Wine Spectator.

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5. Charles Ellner Carte Blanche Brut

Made in France, Charles Ellner Carte Blanche Brut is a true Champagne. Described by the winemaker as “an elegant subtle blend, fresh and fruity with floral hints,” it pairs well with most starters.

Rated 91 points by Wine Spectator, the magazine noted a stark lemon peel acidity, combined with strong hints of marzipan, baked pear and almond skin in this creamy Champagne. The most affordable genuine Champagne on the list, it definitely won’t disappoint.

6. Nicolas Feuillatte Réserve Exclusive Brut

Rated 92 points by both Wine Spectator and The Tasting Panel Magazine and 91 points by James Suckling, Nicolas Feuillatte Réserve Exclusive Brut is a Champagne made from 20% Chardonnay grapes, 40% pinot noir and 40% pinot meuneir, enjoy the scent of floral aromas mixed with white fruits.

If you’re looking for the perfect pairing, the winemaker suggests Breton lobster and cream sauce, sole morel mushrooms and chicken brochettes with citronella.

7. Veuve Fourny et Fils Premier Cru Brut Nature Blanc de Blancs

The most expensive bottle on the list, Veuve Fourny et Fils Premier Cru Brut Nature Blanc de Blancs hails from France’s Champagne region. Harvested by hand, it is made exclusively from chardonnay vieilles vignes.

Overflowing with intensity and freshness, you’ll taste bright citrus notes, finesse, fruit and a balanced palate, according to the winemaker notes. The recommended pairing is seafood, so plan accordingly and serve at the beginning of the meal.

Rated 93 points by Wine & Spirits Magazine and 92 points by Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, you won’t regret this purchase.

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About the Author

Jennifer Taylor is a West Coast-based freelance writer with more than a decade of experience writing about anything and everything. Since earning her MBA, personal finance has been her favorite topic, as she’s passionate about writing stories that educate, inform and empower. Specifically, she specializes in budgeting, debt repayment, savings and retirement.
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