Five Champagne alternatives to toast the New Year

Dec 21, 2021

Champagne and celebrations go hand in hand, which is why the sound of that cork popping fills me with joy. But did you know that the reason we associate Champagne with special occasions dates all the way back to the 18th Century?

A woman holding a champagne glass and sparkle

Cheers to you, Dom Perignon

Champagne was invented in 17th Century France, allegedly by the Benedictine monk Dom Perignon (part of the reason why Dom Perignon remains one of the world’s most elite brands). According to the story, champagne was actually a happy accident. Back then, bubbles were thought to ruin wine, so when poor Dom discovered that the wine he was overseeing had turned bubbly he was probably fairly disappointed -  but when he tasted it, he discovered that it tasted good, famously yelling, “come quick! I am drinking the stars!” 

The trend for sparkling wine spread quickly and wine makers worked hard to refine the Champagne making technique. Some historians believe that at least 20 per cent of wine bottles exploded – we now know that was due to wrong balance of sugar. However, as the science of winemaking was still very much in its infancy, champagne making was a costly and somewhat dangerous undertaking – making it very expensive.

Let them drink bubbles!

Champagne corks

Perhaps it was the cost that made Champagne popular with the royals of Europe, but by the 18th Century, the bubbly drink was synonymous with style and entertainment. In fact, historians say that Madame de Pompadour, the official mistress of Louis XV, ordered Champagne by the gallon for her parties, with one 1739 party going through more than 1,800 bottles of Champagne – it must have been quite the night!

Related: 7 Best Non-Alcoholic Alternatives to Champagne

This long history goes someway to explaining why we all love a glass of bubbly to celebrate a special occasion. And, when it comes to alcohol free champagne alternatives, there are plenty of options – I’ll raise my glass to that! 

The best non-alcoholic sparkling wine options for New Year’s Eve

If you're looking to raise a glass to 2022 then these non-alcoholic sparkling wine options are my top picks.  

Thomson & Scott Noughty


While there isn't (to date) a non-alcoholic wine that hails from the Champagne region of France, the highly acclaimed Noughty is probably the closest we're going to get. 

BBC Good Food writes that Noughty has "earned its place as the world leading alcohol-free alternative to champagne and sparkling wine. Noughty sets the bar high for competitors and was in our opinion the closest match for a real wine."

Three bottles of Thomson and Scott Non-Alcoholic Wine and two glasses of non-alcoholic sparkling wine

And, the UK"s Independent Newspaper, crowned Thomson & Scott's Noughty  as its Best Overall alcohol-free wine in a recent survey into the best dealcoholised wines, stating it was "the closest you'll get to a champagne without the alcohol."

It's not just the critics. In more than 150 Sans Drinks customer reviews, Noughty has an average rating of 4.6. 

The taste: Made with premium Chardonnay grapes, Noughty has an elegant pale colour, a crisp and ripe apple scent, and a dry, Champagne style flavour profile. 

Worth noting: Certified Organic, Certified Vegan, Certified Halal and low in calories with just 14 cals per 100ml and just 2.9g of sugar per 100ml.

What customers are saying: "This has to be the best AF sparkling I’ve had to date - not too sweet, and honestly, I couldn’t tell the difference. Loved it." 

Wild Life Botanicals Sparkling Blush


When it comes to Wild Life Botanicals the tagline says it all - bubbles with benefits. Not only is this expertly crafted, sparkling wine delicious, it is also packed with an uplifting elixir of vitamins, minerals and botanicals specially chosen for their health-giving properties and shown to deliver a minimum 15% of your daily reference intake. 

A woman pouring a bottle of Wild Life Botanicals Blush into a champagne glass

Crafted in Cornwall, in the UK, Wild Life Botanicals is bursting with eight active vitamins and minerals and five botanicals, including Ashwagandha, which is thought to balance blood sugar levels, lower stress hormones, encourage quality sleep and lift energy and mood. Talk about plant power! 

The taste: This non-alcoholic sparkling rose features delicate, champagne-like bubbles, a rounded, mineral palate and aromas of rose and strawberry. 

Worth noting: Vegan friendly and low in sugar (2.4g per 100ml) 

What customers are saying: "I love something a little bit different and this certainly delivers. Very refreshing and not overly sweet. This is by far my favourite sparkling, would definitely recommend!"

Le Petit Etoile Sparkling Chardonnay


Made in France, this elegant sparkling chardonnay is unlike anything else on the market. The woman behind the Le Petit Etoile label, Mathilde Boulachin, was born and raised in the iconic Champagne region of France, so it's fair to say that she knows a thing or two about winemaking. 

Mathilde has a passion for producing unique, stylish alcohol free wines that have close links to their terroir - and Le Petit Etoile Sparkling Chardonnay is a great example. 


A Le Petit Etoile Sparkling Chardonnay bottle on a dinner table

Made via a new and winemaking innovative process, Le Petit Étoilé is the world’s first organic, non fermented, alcohol free range. This wine is also free from added sulphites* and bursting with Polyphenols, making it one of the healthiest alcohol free wine brands on the market. 

*Natural sulphites may still be present, if you have a sulphite allergy, please check this product with your GP.

The Taste: Pale yellow in colour, this non-alcoholic sparkling wine features aromas of white flowers, green apple and white pear along with subtle citrus fruits and buttery notes. It also boasts delicate bubbles and has a memorable, crisp, fresh finish. 

Worth noting: Organically made, with "no added sulphites*, no preservatives and no added sugar

Richard Juhlin Blanc de Blancs Sparkling White

Although this Champagne alternative is made by Oddbird, who are based in Sweden, it is crafted in France, which gives it a big tick from me. It also gets a tick of approval from Richard Juhiln, who is a renowned champagne expert, a name that goes a long way with wine critics. 

One of the things that gives this wine it's edge, is that it's stored in small oak casks for 12 months prior to being de-alcoholised (or as the label says, 'liberated from alcohol') - a method that leaves the natural aroma and character of the wine intact.

A bottle of Richard Juhlin Blanc de Blancs Sparkling White next to a glass of champagne


The UK's Independent newspaper said that this Blanc de Blancs is "almost as vibrant and delectable as a real deal French bubbly" and Sans Drinks customers seem to agree with an impressive average score of 4.7. 

The taste: This well-rounded wine, features the flavours and aromas of fresh fruits and citrus and a delicate Champagne-like mouthfeel. 

Worth noting: Low in calories at 18 cal per 100ml 

What customers are saying:  "I have tried almost every alcohol free sparkling and this one is by far my favourite. Quite often when alcohol is removed, the body of the wine is removed with it, but this sparkling has plenty of body and flavour. It's one I will buy again and again." 

Eisberg Alcohol Free Sparkling Blanc


Eisberg is the UK's most popular non-alcoholic wine and it's easy to see why! Although this sparkler has more of an 'everyday' price tag, it really delivers in terms of taste and mouthfeel. 

If you are looking for a classic Champagne alternative then I'll warn you now that this one is closer to a Prosecco - however, it's so drinkable that you could easily polish off a whole bottle - especially if you have something to celebrate. 

A bottle of Eisberg Alcohol Free Sparkling Blanc on a bucket filled with ice

Eisberg is made in Germany at the renowned Schloss Wachenheim winery, worth noting because the Germans have been well ahead of the game when it comes to removing the alcohol from wine. 

The taste: This fresh and fruity wine boasts flavours of nuts and crisp apple, and features persistent, invigorating bubbles. 

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