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Alcohol and Health

Alcohol Content and Calories in Champagne

Published:
February 16, 2024
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18 min read
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A team of researchers and psychologists who specialize in behavioral health and neuroscience. This group collaborates to produce insightful and evidence-based content.
February 16, 2024
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18 min read
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Certified recovery coach specialized in helping everyone redefine their relationship with alcohol. His approach in coaching focuses on habit formation and addressing the stress in our lives.
February 16, 2024
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18 min read
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Recognized by Fortune and Fast Company as a top innovator shaping the future of health and known for his pivotal role in helping individuals change their relationship with alcohol.
February 16, 2024
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18 min read
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February 16, 2024
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18 min read

Whether it’s for an engagement, wedding, or graduation, Champagne is a hallmark of momentous occasions or special celebrations. But what exactly is Champagne? How many calories are in a glass of Champagne? How much sugar?

In this post, we’ll explore Champagne’s alcohol content and calories, and we’ll compare it to different types of alcohol. We’ll also offer tips for drinking Champagne responsibly. Let’s get started!

What Is Champagne?

First things first: what exactly is Champagne? Champagne is a French term that means “white from whites.” It’s a type of sparkling wine made with grapes grown in the Champagne region of France — about an hour northeast of Paris. In fact, in order for Champagne to be labeled as such, it must be produced in the Champagne region of France following the Méthode Champenoise, or Traditional Method. What is this method? 

champagne toast

The Traditional Method has been used to make Champagne since the 17th century and adheres to a long, specific, and regulated list of requirements that dictates every step of the Champagne-making process. For instance, there are only seven grape varieties that can be used to make Champagne. However, pinot noir, chardonnay and meunier are the three grape varieties most commonly used to make Champagne.

The Traditional Method also requires a second fermentation process in the bottle to produce carbon dioxide (but more on that below!).

Where Do the Bubbles Come From? 

So, what about those bubbles? If Champagne is made from grapes like wine, then why is it bubbly? The bubbles in Champagne come from a second fermentation process when carbon dioxide is produced inside the bottle.

Here’s how it works: just like with other wines, the sugars in grapes — specifically, glucose and fructose — ferment with yeast to create alcohol. This is the primary fermentation process. During the secondary fermentation process, the wine is put into bottles along with a small amount of yeast and sugar. 

After tightly sealing the bottle, it’s stored away to allow time for the yeast to ferment the sugar, create more alcohol, and make carbon dioxide (the bubbles). Since the bottle is sealed, the carbon dioxide can’t escape and dissolves into the wine. 

We might also notice that Champagne bottles tend to be thicker than other wine bottles and have extra heft. This kind of bottle prevents the trapped carbon dioxide — which creates incredible pressure inside the bottle — from exploding. Hence the big “pop” when we open a bottle — and all those bubbles! 

As required by the Traditional Method, non-vintage Champagne is required to age for at least 15 months to develop completely. But some of the most expensive Champagne is aged for five years or more.

Champagne Alcohol Content vs. Other Types of Alcohol

Now that we have a better understanding of what Champagne is and how it’s made, let’s turn to the next question: what is Champagne’s alcohol content, and how does it compare to other alcohol?

The alcohol content of Champagne is about 12% alcohol by volume (ABV). This is relatively high when we compare it to other types of alcohol. For instance, beer typically has around 5% ABV, while wine averages between 11-13% ABV. Liquor, on the other hand, has some of the highest ABV levels, as most fall between 40% and 50% ABV. 

Interestingly, while Champagne typically starts with an alcohol content of 9% after the first fermentation, it goes to about 12% after the second fermentation process. All things considered, drinking a glass of Champagne is close in alcohol content to a glass of wine.

How Many Calories Are in Champagne? 

While most of us don’t think about it, whenever we consume alcohol — including Champagne — we’re consuming calories. But these are largely “empty” calories because they contain no nutritional value! In fact, alcohol is a toxin, so it can actually damage not just our physical body but our brain as well. 

So, how many calories are in Champagne? In a 25-ounce bottle of Champagne, there are approximately 570 calories. Each Champagne bottle contains about six glasses. So a regular 4-ounce glass of Champagne has about 95 calories. This is less than wine, which typically contains about 125 calories for a 5-ounce glass. However, sweet wine contains more calories than drier wine since it contains more sugar.

Liquors typically have a lower calorie count because of their high concentration of alcohol. For instance, vodka, gin, and rum contain around 90 calories per 1.5-ounce serving. However, mixed drinks using high-sugar juices, sodas, and syrup are typically loaded with calories. 

Beer takes first place in the calorie-dense category. A 12-ounce pint of beer can range between 150 and 200 calories. Ready for this? A heavy stout or fruit IPA can weigh in at more than 200-300 calories per pint!

Which Type of Champagne Contains the Fewest Calories? 

Just like wine, Champagne exists on a spectrum from dry to sweet. Also like wine, drier Champagnes contain fewer calories because of their lower sugar content while sweeter Champagnes contain more calories due to their higher sugar content. So, how much sugar is in Champagne? Let’s take a closer look at the different types of Champagne and their sugar content, from least to greatest: 

  • Brut Nature Champagne (most dry). This is the driest type of Champagne and typically contains less than 3 grams of sugar per liter.
  • Extra Brut Champagne (very dry). This is one of the driest types of Champagne and typically contains between 0 and 6 grams of sugar per liter.
  • Brut Champagne (very dry). This is the most common type of Champagne and typically contains less than 3 grams of sugar per liter.
  • Extra Sec Champagne (dry). This type of Champagne typically contains 12-17 grams of sugar per liter.
  • Sec Champagne (medium dry). This type of Champagne typically contains between 17 and 32 grams of sugar per liter.
  • Demi-Sec Champagne (sweet). This is a sweeter Champagne that typically contains 32-50 grams of sugar per liter.

  • Doux Champagne (very sweet). This is the sweetest type of Champagne that typically contains more than 50 grams of sugar per liter. 

In general, a glass of Brut Nature or Zero Dosage Champagne may contain about 100 calories, a Brut will contain a little over 100 calories, a Demi-Sec will contain about 125 calories, and a Doux will contain the most at 130 calories.

Some of the most popular Champagne brands are Veuve Clicquot, Dom Pérignon, Moët & Chandon, Nicolas Feuillatte, Bollinger, and Laurent-Perrier.

Six Tips for Drinking Champagne Responsibly

How Is Champagne Different From Other Sparkling Wines?

As we’ve learned, Champagne is a type of sparkling wine. However, not all sparkling wine is Champagne. This is because in order for Champagne to be Champagne, it has to be made in the Champagne region of France following the Traditional Method we discussed at the beginning of this post. 

That said, it’s relatively easy to find other types of sparkling wine similar to Champagne. For instance, Prosecco is a sparkling white wine from Italy which undergoes a different secondary fermentation process in a large pressurized tank. Prosecco’s alcohol content is equivalent to Champagne’s at about 12%. 

There’s also Cava, a sparkling wine from Spain, which undergoes the same fermentation process as Champagne but with different grapes. Austria and Germany also produce sparkling wines known as Sekt, which is made in a manner similar to Prosecco. There’s even Crémant, another type of sparkling wine from France made outside of Champagne. 

The bottom line: it’s authentic Champagne only if it is produced in the Champagne region of France.

Six Tips for Drinking Champagne Responsibly 

When drinking alcohol — regardless of the type — one of the most important things we can do is drink in moderation. Regularly consuming heavy amounts of alcohol can wreak havoc on our physical and mental health, increasing our risk for serious health issues like cancer, cardiovascular disease, anxiety, depression, and dementia (to name a few). Even just one night of binge drinking brings its own set of health risks. 

With that in mind, let’s look at six tips for drinking Champagne (or any type of alcohol, for that matter) responsibly: 


  1. Count your drinks. Try using a notepad app in your phone to track each glass you drink — whether at a party, dinner, or event. You’ll become more aware of how much you’re consuming. It can be a great tool if you want to take it a step further by limiting yourself to one drink every hour. 

  2. Drink water. And then drink some more. Alcohol is a diuretic, which means it promotes water loss through urine, causing us to become dehydrated. Try drinking one glass of water between each alcoholic beverage to help you stay hydrated throughout the night, which can also help reduce the severity of a hangover.

  3. Sip slowly. Champagne is meant to be sipped, not gulped. Try sipping slowly and staying active while drinking, such as chatting with friends. It’s helpful to incorporate mindful drinking here; it can help us focus on the whole experience rather than mindlessly tossing our drink back. 

  4. Don’t mix with other alcohol. Mixing different types of alcoholic drinks — particularly those with a high concentration of alcohol — can quickly raise BAC levels and increase intoxication. Mixing drinks can cause us to consume a larger amount of alcohol in a short period of time. If you start drinking Champagne, stick to just Champagne. 

  5. Opt for drier Champagne. Try opting for drier Champagnes, such as Brut Nature, Extra Brut, or Brut Champagne. These contain less sugar, which means fewer calories. Remember: the sweeter the Champagne, the more calories it contains. Brut Nature is the best option as it contains less than 3 grams of sugar per liter.

  6. Eat. Finally, whenever you drink Champagne, try to pair it with a healthy meal or snack. Lining our stomach with food slows the processing of alcohol. Consider options like whole-grain crackers, nuts, or a plate of fresh vegetables. Prepare this ahead of time to prevent reaching for something unhealthy, or worse, getting the “drunchies”! 


A glass of Champagne here and there likely won’t be harmful. However, if we’re regularly consuming large amounts of alcohol, we may be compromising our health and well-being. 

The Bottom Line

Champagne is a type of sparkling wine made with certain kinds of grapes grown in the Champagne region of France. On average, a glass of Champagne contains about 12% alcohol by volume (ABV) and about 95 calories. Drier Champagnes, such as Brut Nature, Extra Brut, and Brut, contain lower amounts of sugar and calories, while sweeter Champagnes, such as Demi-Sec and Doux, contain higher amounts of sugar and calories. While indulging in a glass of Champagne can be enjoyable, it’s important to always drink in moderation. 

If you want to cut back on drinking but don’t know where to start, consider trying Reframe. We’re a science-backed app that has helped millions of people cut back on their alcohol consumption and enhance their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. 

Whether it’s for an engagement, wedding, or graduation, Champagne is a hallmark of momentous occasions or special celebrations. But what exactly is Champagne? How many calories are in a glass of Champagne? How much sugar?

In this post, we’ll explore Champagne’s alcohol content and calories, and we’ll compare it to different types of alcohol. We’ll also offer tips for drinking Champagne responsibly. Let’s get started!

What Is Champagne?

First things first: what exactly is Champagne? Champagne is a French term that means “white from whites.” It’s a type of sparkling wine made with grapes grown in the Champagne region of France — about an hour northeast of Paris. In fact, in order for Champagne to be labeled as such, it must be produced in the Champagne region of France following the Méthode Champenoise, or Traditional Method. What is this method? 

champagne toast

The Traditional Method has been used to make Champagne since the 17th century and adheres to a long, specific, and regulated list of requirements that dictates every step of the Champagne-making process. For instance, there are only seven grape varieties that can be used to make Champagne. However, pinot noir, chardonnay and meunier are the three grape varieties most commonly used to make Champagne.

The Traditional Method also requires a second fermentation process in the bottle to produce carbon dioxide (but more on that below!).

Where Do the Bubbles Come From? 

So, what about those bubbles? If Champagne is made from grapes like wine, then why is it bubbly? The bubbles in Champagne come from a second fermentation process when carbon dioxide is produced inside the bottle.

Here’s how it works: just like with other wines, the sugars in grapes — specifically, glucose and fructose — ferment with yeast to create alcohol. This is the primary fermentation process. During the secondary fermentation process, the wine is put into bottles along with a small amount of yeast and sugar. 

After tightly sealing the bottle, it’s stored away to allow time for the yeast to ferment the sugar, create more alcohol, and make carbon dioxide (the bubbles). Since the bottle is sealed, the carbon dioxide can’t escape and dissolves into the wine. 

We might also notice that Champagne bottles tend to be thicker than other wine bottles and have extra heft. This kind of bottle prevents the trapped carbon dioxide — which creates incredible pressure inside the bottle — from exploding. Hence the big “pop” when we open a bottle — and all those bubbles! 

As required by the Traditional Method, non-vintage Champagne is required to age for at least 15 months to develop completely. But some of the most expensive Champagne is aged for five years or more.

Champagne Alcohol Content vs. Other Types of Alcohol

Now that we have a better understanding of what Champagne is and how it’s made, let’s turn to the next question: what is Champagne’s alcohol content, and how does it compare to other alcohol?

The alcohol content of Champagne is about 12% alcohol by volume (ABV). This is relatively high when we compare it to other types of alcohol. For instance, beer typically has around 5% ABV, while wine averages between 11-13% ABV. Liquor, on the other hand, has some of the highest ABV levels, as most fall between 40% and 50% ABV. 

Interestingly, while Champagne typically starts with an alcohol content of 9% after the first fermentation, it goes to about 12% after the second fermentation process. All things considered, drinking a glass of Champagne is close in alcohol content to a glass of wine.

How Many Calories Are in Champagne? 

While most of us don’t think about it, whenever we consume alcohol — including Champagne — we’re consuming calories. But these are largely “empty” calories because they contain no nutritional value! In fact, alcohol is a toxin, so it can actually damage not just our physical body but our brain as well. 

So, how many calories are in Champagne? In a 25-ounce bottle of Champagne, there are approximately 570 calories. Each Champagne bottle contains about six glasses. So a regular 4-ounce glass of Champagne has about 95 calories. This is less than wine, which typically contains about 125 calories for a 5-ounce glass. However, sweet wine contains more calories than drier wine since it contains more sugar.

Liquors typically have a lower calorie count because of their high concentration of alcohol. For instance, vodka, gin, and rum contain around 90 calories per 1.5-ounce serving. However, mixed drinks using high-sugar juices, sodas, and syrup are typically loaded with calories. 

Beer takes first place in the calorie-dense category. A 12-ounce pint of beer can range between 150 and 200 calories. Ready for this? A heavy stout or fruit IPA can weigh in at more than 200-300 calories per pint!

Which Type of Champagne Contains the Fewest Calories? 

Just like wine, Champagne exists on a spectrum from dry to sweet. Also like wine, drier Champagnes contain fewer calories because of their lower sugar content while sweeter Champagnes contain more calories due to their higher sugar content. So, how much sugar is in Champagne? Let’s take a closer look at the different types of Champagne and their sugar content, from least to greatest: 

  • Brut Nature Champagne (most dry). This is the driest type of Champagne and typically contains less than 3 grams of sugar per liter.
  • Extra Brut Champagne (very dry). This is one of the driest types of Champagne and typically contains between 0 and 6 grams of sugar per liter.
  • Brut Champagne (very dry). This is the most common type of Champagne and typically contains less than 3 grams of sugar per liter.
  • Extra Sec Champagne (dry). This type of Champagne typically contains 12-17 grams of sugar per liter.
  • Sec Champagne (medium dry). This type of Champagne typically contains between 17 and 32 grams of sugar per liter.
  • Demi-Sec Champagne (sweet). This is a sweeter Champagne that typically contains 32-50 grams of sugar per liter.

  • Doux Champagne (very sweet). This is the sweetest type of Champagne that typically contains more than 50 grams of sugar per liter. 

In general, a glass of Brut Nature or Zero Dosage Champagne may contain about 100 calories, a Brut will contain a little over 100 calories, a Demi-Sec will contain about 125 calories, and a Doux will contain the most at 130 calories.

Some of the most popular Champagne brands are Veuve Clicquot, Dom Pérignon, Moët & Chandon, Nicolas Feuillatte, Bollinger, and Laurent-Perrier.

Six Tips for Drinking Champagne Responsibly

How Is Champagne Different From Other Sparkling Wines?

As we’ve learned, Champagne is a type of sparkling wine. However, not all sparkling wine is Champagne. This is because in order for Champagne to be Champagne, it has to be made in the Champagne region of France following the Traditional Method we discussed at the beginning of this post. 

That said, it’s relatively easy to find other types of sparkling wine similar to Champagne. For instance, Prosecco is a sparkling white wine from Italy which undergoes a different secondary fermentation process in a large pressurized tank. Prosecco’s alcohol content is equivalent to Champagne’s at about 12%. 

There’s also Cava, a sparkling wine from Spain, which undergoes the same fermentation process as Champagne but with different grapes. Austria and Germany also produce sparkling wines known as Sekt, which is made in a manner similar to Prosecco. There’s even Crémant, another type of sparkling wine from France made outside of Champagne. 

The bottom line: it’s authentic Champagne only if it is produced in the Champagne region of France.

Six Tips for Drinking Champagne Responsibly 

When drinking alcohol — regardless of the type — one of the most important things we can do is drink in moderation. Regularly consuming heavy amounts of alcohol can wreak havoc on our physical and mental health, increasing our risk for serious health issues like cancer, cardiovascular disease, anxiety, depression, and dementia (to name a few). Even just one night of binge drinking brings its own set of health risks. 

With that in mind, let’s look at six tips for drinking Champagne (or any type of alcohol, for that matter) responsibly: 


  1. Count your drinks. Try using a notepad app in your phone to track each glass you drink — whether at a party, dinner, or event. You’ll become more aware of how much you’re consuming. It can be a great tool if you want to take it a step further by limiting yourself to one drink every hour. 

  2. Drink water. And then drink some more. Alcohol is a diuretic, which means it promotes water loss through urine, causing us to become dehydrated. Try drinking one glass of water between each alcoholic beverage to help you stay hydrated throughout the night, which can also help reduce the severity of a hangover.

  3. Sip slowly. Champagne is meant to be sipped, not gulped. Try sipping slowly and staying active while drinking, such as chatting with friends. It’s helpful to incorporate mindful drinking here; it can help us focus on the whole experience rather than mindlessly tossing our drink back. 

  4. Don’t mix with other alcohol. Mixing different types of alcoholic drinks — particularly those with a high concentration of alcohol — can quickly raise BAC levels and increase intoxication. Mixing drinks can cause us to consume a larger amount of alcohol in a short period of time. If you start drinking Champagne, stick to just Champagne. 

  5. Opt for drier Champagne. Try opting for drier Champagnes, such as Brut Nature, Extra Brut, or Brut Champagne. These contain less sugar, which means fewer calories. Remember: the sweeter the Champagne, the more calories it contains. Brut Nature is the best option as it contains less than 3 grams of sugar per liter.

  6. Eat. Finally, whenever you drink Champagne, try to pair it with a healthy meal or snack. Lining our stomach with food slows the processing of alcohol. Consider options like whole-grain crackers, nuts, or a plate of fresh vegetables. Prepare this ahead of time to prevent reaching for something unhealthy, or worse, getting the “drunchies”! 


A glass of Champagne here and there likely won’t be harmful. However, if we’re regularly consuming large amounts of alcohol, we may be compromising our health and well-being. 

The Bottom Line

Champagne is a type of sparkling wine made with certain kinds of grapes grown in the Champagne region of France. On average, a glass of Champagne contains about 12% alcohol by volume (ABV) and about 95 calories. Drier Champagnes, such as Brut Nature, Extra Brut, and Brut, contain lower amounts of sugar and calories, while sweeter Champagnes, such as Demi-Sec and Doux, contain higher amounts of sugar and calories. While indulging in a glass of Champagne can be enjoyable, it’s important to always drink in moderation. 

If you want to cut back on drinking but don’t know where to start, consider trying Reframe. We’re a science-backed app that has helped millions of people cut back on their alcohol consumption and enhance their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. 

Summary FAQs

1. What is Champagne?

Champagne is a type of sparkling wine made with certain kinds of grapes grown in the Champagne region of France. Pinot noir, chardonnay and meunier are the three most commonly used grape varieties used to make Champagne.

2. Where do the bubbles in Champagne come from? 

The bubbles result from undergoing a second fermentation process where carbon dioxide is produced inside the bottle and dissolves into the wine. 

3. What is Champagne’s alcohol content? 

Champagne contains about 12% alcohol by volume (ABV). This is relatively high when compared to other types of alcohol, such as beer (5% ABV) and wine (11-13% ABV). However, it’s less than liquor, which typically falls between 40% and 50% ABV.

4. How many calories are in Champagne?

A regular 4-ounce glass of Champagne has about 95 calories. This is less than wine, which typically contains about 125 calories for a 5-ounce glass, and beer, which contains about 150-200 calories per pint. 

5. Which types of Champagne have the fewest calories? 

In general, drier Champagnes, such as Brut Nature, Extra Brut, and Brut, contain fewer calories because they have lower sugar contents. Sweeter Champagnes, such as Demi-Sec and Doux, contain more sugar and calories. 

6. How is Champagne different from other sparkling wines?

Champagne is a type of sparkling wine. However, not all sparkling wine is Champagne. For Champagne to be labeled as such, it has to be made in the Champagne region of France following the Traditional Method (Méthode Champenoise).

7. What are some tips for drinking Champagne responsibly?

It’s best to drink any alcohol in moderation. Ways to moderate include tracking our drinks, hydrating, sipping slowly, diluting with juice or another non-alcoholic mixer, opting for drier Champagnes, and eating while drinking. 

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