Do You Splurge on Expensive Champagne?

Holiday parties are in full swing and New Years Eve (gasp) isn't all that far away. So it's time to break out the champagne! But wait: does that mean it's also time to shell out the big bucks?

Alex Halberstadt writes about the complex relationship between perceived quality and price of champagne on Gilt Taste. He says, "To nurture a desire for champagne is to make peace both with its singular pleasures--a kind of ecstatic brain freeze--and the inevitable expense." He calls it a "signifier of graceful living" but also points out how misunderstood it is and how often, especially with vintage bottles, people falsely equate cost with quality when really they may not understand how to tell when a good champagne is ready to be opened. For this reason, folks often let an expensive bottle sit far longer than it should.

There's a balance between saving a good bottle because it was pricey and knowing when to enjoy something now. Expensive doesn't always mean "save it for later." And inexpensive doesn't always mean expendable.

What's your champagne philosophy? Do you think price is a signifier of a good Champagne? Do you have a favorite mid-range bubbly?

Related: What Can I Do With Leftover Champagne?

(Image: Flickr member oskay licensed under Creative Commons, and Liz Vidyarthi