10 Top Affordable Champagnes

Reasonably-priced Champagnes can be terrific. Here are 10 of the best.
NV Pol Roger Brut Réserve ($35).
NV Pol Roger Brut Réserve ($35).
Courtesy of Pol Roger

10 Picks:

Pol Roger Brut Réserve ($35)

Year in and year out, this medium-bodied, well-balanced wine from a leading small Champagne house is a perennial value and a particular favorite of mine.

Ayala Brut Majeur ($40)

Clean and bright, with good acidity—a sprightly aperitif from a long-established Champagne house that has made a big quality rebound in recent years.

Bollinger Special Cuvée ($45)

Bollinger’s nonvintage—broad-flavored and toasty—is a true classic.

Marc Hébrart Cuvée de Réserve Brut ($50) This grower, based in the Vallée de la Marne, may not be famous, but his elegant Pinot Noir–dominant wine deserves to be better known.

Charles Heidsieck Brut Réserve ($55)

The house style of the highly regarded Charles Heidsieck is readily apparently in this wine: complex yet approachable, full-bodied but lively.

Gosset Grande Réserve Brut ($55)

There’s excellent weight and richness in this nonvintage from one of the oldest houses in Champagne; it’s a great wine to pair with food.

Guy Larmandier Vertus Brut Premier Cru ($55)

A delicate wine from one of the top growers in the Côtes des Blancs region of Champagne.

Philipponnat Brut Royale Réserve ($55)

This nonvintage from a highly regarded small Champagne house is a “wow” of a wine and nearly as good as Philipponnat’s famed tête de cuvée, Clos des Goisses.

Jean Milan Carte Blanche Brut ($60)

Generous and creamy— a masterpiece of a wine.

Alfred Gratien Brut Classique ($70)

A lovely, well-balanced, rather fruity blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier that’s a pure pleasure to drink.

Lettie Teague’s Champagne Picks:


5 Great, Affordable Sparkling Wines

5 Great, Affordable Sparkling Wines

F&W’s Champagne Guide

F&W’s Champagne Guide

Best Rosé Champagnes and Sparkling Wines

Best Rosé Champagnes and Sparkling Wines

PUBLISHED December 2008