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If I Can’t Afford Champagne, Can I Serve Sparkling Wine?

If I Can’t Afford Champagne, Can I Serve Sparkling Wine?

Is it gauche to serve the less expensive stuff?

Coryanne Ettiene is a kitchen living and entertaining expert who appears frequently on-air, in print, and across multiple social media channels sharing her love of kitchen living and entertaining in style. Each week Coryanne answers questions from The Daily Meal’s readers on the dilemmas they face while entertaining at home and celebrating the holidays, offering tips for being a confident and modern host.

Have a question you want Coryanne to answer? Reach out on Facebook and Twitter, or drop us an email, and check back every week for new tips and advice.

Question: "I am on a limited budget and cannot afford to serve champagne at my cocktail party this weekend. Is it frowned upon to serve sparkling wine instead?"

Coryanne: I love champagne, but find that some occasions call for an alternative, and with the variety of sparkling wines out there, you can still offer a stylish bubbly without the added expense of champagne. Popular variations of sparkling wine are found across the globe and come in a variety of tastes and colors; most notable is the Italian prosecco that offers the crisp and dry taste that is commonly found in champagne.

Another Italian favorite of mine is the lambrusco because it pops with a bold red color and offers a well-rounded berry flavor that can be served all year-round. When looking to add a dash of pink to my bubbly, I always reach for the Australian taché. It is a popular sparkling wine that frequently carries a lighter, fruiter taste, which is great for summer entertaining.

Of course, sparkling wine makes a great mixer as well, especially when you are looking to create a bubbly cocktail. When using sparkling wine as a cocktail mixer, reach for a standard white sparkling wine that offers a dry and mild bouquet to keep the cocktail simple and the focus on all the ingredients, not just the bubbly.


Wine

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur . Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby .

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.


Wine

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur . Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby .

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.


Wine

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur . Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby .

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.


Wine

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur . Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby .

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.


Wine

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur . Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby .

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.


Wine

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur . Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby .

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.


Wine

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur . Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby .

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.


Wine

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur . Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby .

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.


Wine

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur . Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby .

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.


Wine

Todd: Now, you are a wine connoisseur . Or wine teacher. No!

Sandra: Not really!

Todd: Not really?

Sandra: A wine connoisseur. No, that's sort of a snobby .

Todd: Oh, really?

Sandra: Yes.

Todd: Oh, OK. So, how would you describe what you do?

Sandra: A wine professional.

Todd: A wine professional. OK, so what does a wine professional do?

Sandra: Try to make money from wine.

Sandra: So, I'm a wine writer, a wine columnist. I teach wine.

Todd: OK, so let's say if I'm going to have friends over, and I'm making let's say steak. I'm having a grilling steak. Can I serve wine with steak?

Sandra: Yes. Steak goes with almost any red wine.

Todd: Oh, really. OK. So, red. How about if I want to mix wines. Is it OK to go red wine, white wine?

Sandra: You always start out with white wines going towards red wines.

Todd: OK, always go white wine first, then the red wine. (Yes) OK, and how about for dessert. Is there a special dessert wine?

Sandra: There are many great dessert wines, so it depends on what you like, how sweet you like and what you're making for dessert.

Todd: OK, so how about I'm making terimisu.

Sandra: Terimisu, then I would probably have a tawny port, either from Portugal or from Australia, which makes great ports, or you might even go for a fruity and oaky zinfandel, which is dry wine from California.

Todd: OK, nice. How much will that cost me?

Sandra: Depends on how much you want to spend. For a port, a tawny port, anywhere in between 3,500 to 10,000 (OK) And for a California Zinfandel, a good one probably about 3,000 (yen).

Todd: 3,000. I think I can maybe afford that. Not much. And, how about what would be a good wine to start off for like appetizers or with a salad or something like that.

Sandra: I always start off with a sparkling wine.

Todd: A sparkling wine.

Sandra: Yes. I prefer champagne but if you can't afford it, even though champagne is the lowest price anywhere in the world is in Japan

Todd: Oh, really.

Sandra: And many of my students load up on cases of champagne and have it sent home by their companies container.


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