Consumer champion Which? says that sharing a little Christmas cheer does not need to cost a bundle, with high-quality supermarket brand champagnes available at a reasonable price.  In fact, it is possible to throw a Christmas party with plenty of bubbly for considerably less than some people may think.

Which? recently enlisted a panel of experts to test 14  brands of champagne that are available at various supermarkets to find out how well they stacked up against the more expensive brands of bubbly.

Of the 14 champagnes that were included in the comparison, the following bargain priced brands landed at the top of the list, proving that good tasting champagne does not have to cost a bundle.

Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut NV Champagne came out the leader with a rating of 90 percent, at a price of £31.91.  Following a closesecond at 89 percent was Sainsbury’s Blanc Noirs Brut NV Champagne, and at only £15.98, it is about half the price.

Another champagne that scored an 89 percent was H Blin & Co Brut NV at £24.99, available at Oddbins.  Not far behind with an 88 percent was Les Pionniers Brut from the Co-operative with a price of £15.55.

At the bottom of the list was Moët and Chandon’s Brut NV.  It came in at 13out of 14 champagnes that were tested because experts reported that it had “aggressive acidity” and a “slightly medicinal” aroma.

The experts at Which? also tested a variety fo sparkling wines with the following results:

The top choice wat Bluff Hill Brut from M&S at £8.99, with an 87 percent rating.  Testers liked the scent, which was described as “vibrant citrus” and the flavor, which they found to be refreshing and well-balanced.  Another favorite with a rating of 86 percent was Graham Beck Brut, which is available from Waitrose for £12.99.

The best value sparkling wines, both with a rating of 85 percent were Aldi’s Phillippe Michel Crémant du Jura Brut and Griffiths Park Sparkling Brut, available at Morrisons and Asda for less than £7.

According to Which?  editor Martyn Hocking, it is good to know that it is not necessary to spend a lot of money to get a good champagne this holiday season.  For example, Sainsbury’s own brand is exceptional.  It is also worthwhile considering serving sparkling wines, to keep the party flowing for a fraction of the price.Budget Bubbly