Supermarket festive fizz takes top champagne award

An own brand champagne has been named best value Christmas bubbly.

The Waitrose fizz, which sells at £20, tasted almost as good as prestigious makers Veuve Clicquot and Piper-Heidsieck.

A panel tasted 17 branded and supermarket own-label non-vintage “shampers” costing less than £35 a bottle.

The Waitrose champagne came third – but topped the most affordable list.

Wine expert and taste panellist Fiona Beckett said:

“I’m not surprised to find an own-label champagne doing so well; they’re generally great quality and no one should feel self-conscious about buying them.

“They don’t have the same promotional overheads and are bought in huge volume which keeps down the price.

“These days champagne is often as cheap or cheaper than English sparkling wine.”

The cheapest champagne – less than £8 a bottle – was from Lidl.

Its Comte de Senneval Brut NV was noted out for its “beautiful touch of apple strudel”.

However, some tasters admitted they found it lacking in flavour.

Waitrose said it was “thrilled” to be “rubbing shoulders” with famous bubbly brands.

Italian prosecco, however, is still the nation’s favourite sparkling tipple.

British shoppers bought 117 million bottles in 2018 – while champagne sold 24 million bottles.



About the Author

Philip Braund spent 16 years at the Daily Mirror as a reporter and news editor before moving to ITV. He was the series producer of the ground-breaking investigation programme The Cook Report, Managing Editor at ITV's Millbank Studios, and Head of News at ITV Central. He has won national and regional Royal Television Society awards for documentaries.

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