Ever wondered about Champagne’s Alcohol Content? Well, it sure can change a lot about how you consume your liquor. We simply love the warm fuzzy feeling one gets after drinking champagne. This is a good reason why this popular drink results in our giggles and fills us with happiness. But did you know that champagne has a surprisingly high alcohol by volume content as compared to various similar beverages like sparkling wine? So, how much is ‘too much of the bubbly’? Let us find out more in this article.
To know more about How many units and calories are in champagne? We need to know more about the champagne itself.
To start with, the champagne is a bubbly alcoholic beverage that has originated in France. It is often enjoyed during celebrations, milestones, and special events. However, if you are not careful, these bubbles could go straight into your head as a nasty hangover the following day. Hence, a bottle of champagne has about 12% alcohol. It is necessary to know at what range the champagne alcohol content falls as compared to other alcoholic drinks. Also, knowing the alternatives to champagne is necessary if you wish to stop drinking or are trying to slow down your overall intake.
Understanding Alcohol Content in Champagne
Have you ever wondered about the Champagne alcohol content while sipping the beverage? Well, the champagne comprises about 12.2% alcohol by volume (ABV.) Nevertheless, it differs with the wine style, how it is produced, and how you consume it as well. For example, a ‘Champagne cocktail’ is the type that would be diluted and have lower alcohol content.
Interestingly, the alcohol level and bubbles of this special sparkling wine are the results of a two-round yeast fermentation process. During fermentation, the yeast eats up the grape sugar to produce alcohol and carbon dioxide.
Champagne is produced from Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, and Chardonnay grapes that don’t have high sugar; hence, a lot can differ in each resulting type. As the grape juice has little sugar for the yeast to extract energy from, the first fermentation round brings the Champagne alcohol content only up to 9%, without resulting in much bubble production.
Hence, the winemaker performs a second fermentation by adding the wine to a bottle with yeast and sugar, which is also known as ‘methode champenoise’. The added sugar is the deciding factor in the sugar content of the wine.
It is during the process of secondary fermentation that the yeast eats up the sugar. Hence, this results in an increase in the alcohol content in the Champagne bottle.
Let us take a look at some of the other major types of Champagne type and their typical ABV percentage:
- Prosecco: A single bottle of this Italian white wine has an alcohol level of 10.5% – 11.5%.
- Cava DO: Cava DO is a Spanish sparkling white wine also known as the rose wine. It has a relatively higher alcohol content for sparkling wine that ranges from 12.5%-13.5% ABV.
- Franciacorta: This sparkling wine variety is native to Brescia, Northern Italy. A Franciacorta bottle can comprise as little as 9.5% alcohol content or as high as 12.5%.
- Asti: The alcohol by volume of this Italian sparkling wine variety can range from 7% to 9.5%, normally.
Champagne Styles and Their Alcohol Content
Champagne can be manufactured in various styles, according to the producer’s choice of grape varieties. Here, the most common style is the Brut Champagne. This is a non-vintage dry house blend that has been prepared from the three most common Champagne varieties: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier.
The Rosé Champagne can be prepared from either of the two methods: The saignée method, in which the clear juice from red varieties macerates with the skins is used and this results in a lightly colored wine, or the assemblage method, where a tiny amount of still red wine is made to blend into the still base white wine.
Blanc de Noirs Champagne is a white sparkling wine that has been produced from the region’s permitted black grapes. This method needs as little contact between the juice and the grape must required and as possible. Blanc de Blancs Champagne, on the other hand, is a white sparkling wine variety that has been manufactured using the permitted white grapes of the region.
Impact of Alcohol Content on Champagne Experience
Did you know that champagne and other carbonated alcoholic drinks can be a reason for the spike in your blood alcohol concentrations much more quickly compared to consuming still drinks? You can feel drunker when consuming sparkling alcoholic beverages as compared to non-sparkling alcoholic drinks. When comparing, the person can drink a four-ounce glass of champagne or one shot of liquor that comprises the same alcohol content and hence feel the effects of the champagne much more quickly and strongly because of the bubbles. It is the presence of these bubbles in the liquid that causes the alcohol to enter your bloodstream more rapidly compared to when they are absent.
As the effects of champagne can easily hit the bloodstream rather quickly, you must take it easy when consuming a nice glass of the bubbly. Be sure to sip slowly from the flute. Also, it is advised to make a mental note to only have one drink an hour to maintain a clear head and not fall into a drunken stupor.
As the champagne alcohol percentage is generally the same as that of wine or your basic cocktail, the overall effects of champagne can hit you much harder and stronger as compared to their alcoholic counterparts. As the champagne-making process comprises two fermentation processes, it comprises more specific chemicals that can lead to your hangovers worse than normal. Such chemicals are known as congeners and are responsible for some of the taste, color, and aroma of the champagne.
Moderation and Responsible Consumption of Champagne
Now, it is not rocket science that you need to be careful when consuming alcohol, and the same applies to champagne as well. For this, there are a few considerations to take care of.
In case the champagne is not more dosed in alcohol, or even less dosed than a Burgundy wine, for instance (13.5%), its effervescent bubbles composed of carbon dioxide can lead to a different effect on the body. Various studies that have been conducted at the Epsom Hospital in England have clearly shown that they assist in the absorption of alcohol in the stomach. Hence, it is advised to be drunk slowly and in moderation as well.
While the famous refreshing pool champagne that is served under the sun can be such a relief, the question might arise: does adding a few ice cubes lead to lowering the alcohol content? Well, not exactly, as your champagne, which is served with 12.5% alcohol, can have the same alcohol content, even with a few ice cubes.
Likewise, the serving temperature does not affect the alcohol content as well. This is generally served between 6° and 9° or between 10° and 12° for prestigious cuvées. You need to know that the alcohol content of champagne does not vary much as a result. But when served too hot, it can bring out certain notes that are a little too alcoholic and can overtake the aromas.
So, does the aging of a champagne change the alcohol content? Well, the bottles of champagne can age for quite a few years without their alcohol content changing even slightly. They might, nevertheless, grow more complex, but that is another case of consideration.
Similarly, if the sugar level is made to differ between the different families of the champagne, the alcohol level remains unchanged. Hence, a Demi-sec champagne, which ranges between 32 and 50 grams of sugar per liter, might not be more alcoholic as compared to the Extra brut champagne, which has a range between 0 and 6 grams of sugar, or even the Brut nature for that matter whose sugar dosage is the lowest in the entire category.
Much like other alcoholic beverages, champagne needs to be consumed in moderation. It is the singularity and its exceptional image that make it a pure-tasting product that is enjoyed slowly and never in excess.
Champagne Alcohol Content: Conclusion
Champagne is considered a celebratory drink that is enjoyed by millions of people across the world. However, you mustn’t go overboard with it when getting behind the wheel. As you might be aware, the DUI laws and consequences can be quite swift and harsh on individuals. Ranging from steep fines to driver’s license suspension and even jail time, the DUI conviction needs to be taken seriously. However, that should not prevent you from enjoying a bubbly of your choice. So, get those flutes out and pour in your favorite Sparkle to enjoy a nice ‘blissful time of pure pleasure’.
Champagne Alcohol Content: FAQ's
Question 1. What is the average alcohol content in champagne?
Answer: The Alcohol Percentage is 12.2%.
Question 2. Does the alcohol content vary between different champagne brands?
Answer: No, it varies a little.
Question 3. Can you choose champagne based on its alcohol content?
Answer: Yes, you can.
Question 4. How does the alcohol content affect the taste of champagne?
Answer: The fruity aromas of the Grapes diminish due to the higher content of the alcohol in it.
Question 5. Are there low-alcohol or non-alcoholic Champagne options available?
Answer: Yes, there are various low-alcohol and non-alcoholic Champagne options present.
Question 6. Is there a way to control the alcohol content during Champagne production?
Answer: Yes, the Alcohol content can be controlled with the help of applying the Reverse Osmosis and the Spinning cone method.
Question 7. How does the alcohol content impact the overall experience of drinking champagne?
Answer: It can get you more drunk.
Question 8. Are there any health considerations associated with alcohol content in champagne?
Answer: Yes, too much Alcohol consumption can easily harm the Cardiovascular health of the individual.