What is Brut Champagne?
Brut Champagne refers to the driest (least sweet) sparkling wines from the Champagne province of France. The three types of Brut Champagnes are classified by their degrees of sugar content: Brut Nature, Extra Brut, and Brut. It’s important to know that the French word, “Brut,” means ‘dry, raw, unrefined.’
Is Brut Champagne sweet or dry?
Sparkling wines tend to be quite acidic. This is why varying amounts of sugar or grape juice are added just before bottling Brut Champagne to reduce the sours and round out the flavors. Until the mid-1800s, all Champagnes were sweet like some Proseccos.
Given not everyone has a sweet tooth, Brut Champagne has forever since filled the flutes, catering to refined taste buds and palates of provincial French or anyone else who shares that low-glycemic desire.
What is a sweet champagne called?
Sweet Champagnes are described as ‘Doux.’ However, a few other styles of Champagne like demi-sec and sec can be on the sweeter side as well. If you prefer dry Champagnes, you might want to pass on those labeled ‘sec’ as that means ‘slightly sweet’ in French.
Here is a list of Champagne types, from least sweet (Brut Nature) to most sweet (Doux):
- Brut Nature (or Brut Zero)
- Extra Brut
- Extra Dry
- Dry (or Sec)
Where does Brut Champagne come from?
As all Champagne, Brut Champagne must be produced only in the Champagne province of France using Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, or Pinot Meunier grapes. If not produced in Champagne, France, then it’s not officially able to be called a Champagne and instead would be a sparkling wine.
If you see a sparkling wine labeled “Brut Champagne” that’s clearly not produced in Champagne, leave the store. Do not support their Napoleon complex. The price alone should tip you off. Genuine Brut Champagne tends to be on the expensive side.
How is Brut Champagne made?
As decreed by dusty old laws, it all begins in Champagne, France — and under penalty nowhere else. The production process is basically the same as all Champagnes, although, after the second fermentation, a hint of extra sugar is added to adjust the sweetness level. This decision depends upon which type of Brut Champagne is being made.
In complying with what constitutes a Brut Champagne, producers keep the sugar levels at less than 15 grams per liter. Extra Brut Champagne is bone-dry because it only has .6% sugar, and Brut Nature, by definition, has zero sugar added.
Champagne varieties are characterized by the specific blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, or Pinot Meunier grapes used, the vineyards, and many times the vintages unless dated as ‘vintage’ Champagne.
It’s par for the course that roughly 45 wines will converge to create the final bottled blend of Champagne. Each Champagne house strives for a distinct while consistent ‘house style’ regardless of the year produced. After harvesting the grapes and fermenting them, the batch is aged a little, just as most wines are. Then, comes the typical second fermenting that gives Champagne its extra bubbly, celebrated reputation as a sparkling vino.
Brut Champagne production follows that same process — with one crucial exception. After the second fermentation, a hint of extra sugar is added to adjust the sweetness level. This decision depends upon which type of Brut Champagne is being made. And again, not even a trace of sugar is added to Brut Nature.
How else can you enjoy a Brut Champagne? May we suggest a Brut Rose Champagne to liven up both your table settings and conversations? Allow guests to savor your sweet torte or pie as a perfectly paired treat to Brut tradition. With each pour, imbibe in the symphony of others who gleefully raise their pink glasses to the sunsets of the Champagne province.
Is Brut champagne good for mimosas?
Yes! If offered a Brut Champagne for your next Mimosa, seize the opportunity. Brut Champagne is often the top choice, given its dry character. Much fitting in pairing with a juice that’s already naturally sweet. After all, who wants to start the new year with a sugar low?
Want more tips on Mimosas and brunch drinks for Champagne and other sparkling wines? Visit our Mimosa & Bellini Bar Ideas page for some inspiration!
What are the most popular Brut Champagnes?
We carry a great selection of Champagne and Brut Champagne, including some of the most popular brands served around the world! A few of our most popular Brut Champagne brands include:
Want to learn more about Champagne?
See our wide selection of Brut Champagne and sample all this category has to offer, or visit our Guide to Champagne to learn even more about this category!