Great Champagne Alternatives

Alternatives to Champagne for Wedding Toast White Wine

I don’t know where/when my love affair with Prosecco/Cava began, but it’s a hot and heavy relationship. We’re seeing each other a fairly regular basis now, and it’s blissful.

I think it started when I was trying to find a “go-to” alcoholic beverage. For awhile, my go-to was a dirty martini. Let me just share with you now that that’s not a good “go-to” drink to have…after two of them you’ll be shit-faced. Not to mention all the calories!

I knew that Champagne was a low-calorie, yummy drink option, but the champagne “by the glass” that I could afford at a bar was usually not very tasty. Then one day, I remember trying a glass of Prosecco (because it was the cheaper option on the menu) and loving it. A few months later for New Year’s eve, we went to the local liquor store and bought not only some Prosecco for our midnight toast, but a bottle of Cava. I was hooked. Now, yearslater, it has become our “house” drink, and my go-to when I’m out. It was also what I chose to have at my wedding.

If you don’t know the difference between Champagne, Prosecco, and Cava, let me fill you in. Champagne is a sparkling wine that is made exclusively in the Champagne region of France. Prosecco is a dry sparkling wine (in rare instances you can find a still variety) made in the Veneto region of Italy. Cava is a dry sparkling wine made in Spain…I think you get the point. The main difference between Champagne and Prosecco/Cava is, in my mind, the price. I actually happen to PREFER the taste of Prosecco/Cava over Champagne. Not to sound all wine-snobby, but they just taste cleaner to me.

To me, weddings are synonymous with the bubbly stuff. But, unless you’re willing to shell out $50/bottle for decent wedding champagne, you’ll be stuck with the standard fare: California sparklers like Mumm or, gulp, Korbel. For the same price (less than $13/bottle) you can have an AMAZING Prosecco or Cava for your wedding toast and behind your wedding bar. This brand is by far my favorite, and what we served at our wedding:

Tips/Ideas for Serving Bubbly at Your Wedding:

-Most people choose to have their wedding champagne toast after the best man/maid of honor make their speeches. In my experience, I’ve found that by then, people have already chosen what they’re going to be drinking for the night. Once people are seated for dinner, they’re either sticking with their drinks from cocktail hour, or switching to wine. While the champagne toast might be symbolic, people rarely finish their glass. Instead of wasting a case of champagne/prosecco/cava on the toast, have people toast with what they’re already drinking. Have the DJ/MOH/BM say something drink-neutral like, “Raise your glasses and and toast the new bride and groom!”

-I love going to any kind of event and being greeted with a glass of SOMETHING. With all the bubbly you’ll be saving by not having your toast with it, have servers greet each of your guests when they arrive with a glass of champagne/prosecco/cava or a glass of sparkling water. Also have it available on serving trays during cocktail hour.

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