Fantastic fizz: 17 of the best cheap Champagnes for 2021

Cheap and cheers-ful, Champagnes that taste great and won't break the bank

Updated on 16 June 2021

Fantastic fizz: 17 of the best cheap Champagnes for 2021

Most people would agree that Champagne still reigns supreme when it comes to sparkling wines, in spite of the rise in people drinking prosecco and English sparkling wine. If you ask us, there’s no better way to celebrate a momentous occasion than by popping the cork off a bottle of bubbly, and it really is best if that bubbly is proper Champagne. 

Whether it’s right that Champagne is seen as a luxury in a way that other sparkling wines are not isn’t for us to say, but Rome wasn’t built in a day and the Champenois have invested hundreds of years of time and money into educating consumers into the unique virtues of Champagne and protecting its name. And while it’s generally true that with luxury items like Champagne, you do tend to get what you pay for, that doesn’t mean anything under £50 is going to taste like hairspray – far from it –  which is where this guide comes in. 

We’ve tasted our way through the best Champagnes under £40 (cue jokes about what a tough gig this job is) and come up with this list of what we consider to be the best cheap Champagne on the market right now. And we’d like to stress that when we say ‘cheap’, we don’t mean low-quality or mediocre-tasting – this is SquareMeal after all – we mean affordable luxury for those who still want something wonderful to drink, without having hundreds to drop on a bottle of expensive Champagne

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Most of the Champagnes in our round-up are non-vintage which, in case you’re wondering, means that the grapes used are from more than one year’s harvest, allowing the Champagne house to balance the flavours from one year to another and produce their signature house style. They are more commonly available, but not necessarily less flavourful than vintage Champagnes. As the proof of the pudding is always in the tasting, we recommend you check out as many of these bottles as your wallet allows.   

Lidl Comte de Senneval

What: Lidl Comte de Senneval Brut Champagne is a snip at the price at £12.50 and a crowd-pleaser at parties. On the palate there are citrus notes, lots of crisp apple fruit and a biscuity richness that leads to a clean, dry finish. We like it as an everyday treat, something to jazz up simple canapés like smoked salmon, or splashed into any Champagne cocktail.
Where to buy it: Lidl
Price: £12.99

Aldi Veuve Monsigny Champagne Brut

What: We’ve all been there; found ourselves reaching for the cheap supermarket fizz at everyday prices only to allow our snobbishness to get the better of us and buy something more expensive. Don’t always let your instincts get the better of you. Aldi’s Veuve Monsigny is that Champagne, and it’s worth putting six bottles in the basket. Displaying floral hints and apples on the nose and a crisp, dry palate of red fruits and lifted blossom on the palate, it’s an assertive everyday fizz, perfect for cocktails and for kick-starting an evening. 
Where to buy it: Aldi
Price: £12.99

Nicolas Courtin

What: This decent house fizz from Majestic emanates from a Champagne house that was only founded in 1993, by rising star Nicolas Gueusquin. Nicolas has fostered good relationships with growers throughout the region, meaning he gets the pick of their grapes to produce a fizz that oozes charm on account of its citrus, biscuit palate. The wine is packed with ripe apple flavours which makes it an ideal aperitif, that goes equally well with a fish starter.
Where to buy it: Majestic
Price: £16.99

Waitrose Blanc de Noirs Champagne 

This Waitrose house champagne is made purely of Pinot Noir (no Pinot Meunier, in this one) by a small house called Alexandre Bonnet who grow their own grapes in the southerly Aube region. The wine is packed with fruity richness and biscuity notes. It’s a ‘vin de plaisir’ rather than anything too serious, but deliciously refreshing. It has grip and persistence and is delicious with fish and chips. The sort of well-made but attractively priced fizz you always want to have chilling in the fridge.
Where to buy it:  Waitrose
Price: £23.99

Heidsieck & Co Monopole 'Bronze Top' Brut Champagne

What: This fizz from one of Champagne's oldest houses boasts a stellar customer list including Tsar Nicholas II who, once a year, would fill two whole trains with the stuff, so the story goes. Its toasty nose gives way to a fresh, zippy palate of black fruits and citrus with an attractive yeastiness.
Where to buy it: WinesDirect
Price: £24.99

Piper-Heidsieck Champagne Brut

What: This award-winning Champagne is fresh, light and bursting with zingy citrus flavours. The brand is synonymous with precise wine-making and its classic structure delivers a nutty nose together with citrus and pear flavours on the palate. This Champagne works well as an aperitif but on account of its roundness in the mouth, amplified by ageing on the lees and the inclusion of reserve wines, it’s a versatile accompaniment to food too.
Where to buy it: Waitrose Cellar
Price: £35

Lanson Black Label Brut

This fine Champagne, that dates back to 1760, boasts plenty of finesse, pedigree and concentration that opens up with time in the glass. Its nose is accented with toasty richness interwoven with delicate flowers leads into a palate of round ripe fruit cut through with a citrus zip. A smooth texture and decent finish adds further appeal.
Where to buy it: Drink Supermarket
Price: £25.99

Tesco Finest Vintage Champagne

What: Tesco’s Finest Vintage Champagne has won so many accolades over the years that it just had to make it on our list of the best cheap Champagnes. Made from Chardonnay grapes alone, it’s crisp and dry with delightful citrus notes. 
Where to buy it: Tesco
Price: £26

Nicolas Feuillatte Brut Reserve NV

What: This best-selling retail wine ticks a lot of boxes. The palate is distinguished by notes of pear and apricot combined with toasty richness and a slight honeyed sweetness. A combination of ageing on lees and cellar-ageing adds complexity that you don’t always associate with Champagne at this price point.
Where to buy it: Waitrose Cellar
Price: £28

Ayala Brut Majeur

What: Beautifully dry and fresh, Ayala’s delicately pale Brut Majeur fizzes with notes of citrus, apple and honey. It’s won plenty of awards for everything from its refreshing taste to its value for money and continues to be one of the most popular Champagnes for those looking to celebrate a special occasion without spending a fortune. Now owned by the Bollinger family, Ayala is a hidden treasure. 
Where to buy it: Waitrose Cellar
Price: £29.99

Canard-Duchene Cuvée Léonie Brut NV

What: There’s a surprising depth and maturity about Canard-Duchene’s Cuvée Léonie – maybe on account of its decent slug of reserve wines – while attractive toasty and slightly spicy aromas lead into a palate that sparkles with bright, ripe orchard fruit. The Cuvée Léonie Collection has been crafted specifically to complement food and this wine certainly demonstrates great versatility with the likes of chicken, seafood and cheese.
Where to buy it: The Champagne Company
Price: £28

Louis Roederer Brut Premier NV

What: Not quite as special as its Cristal 2008 Vintage Champagne, but not far off and, for the price, it’s an exceptional buy. The purity of the grapes combined with a full three-years ageing on lees and a good dollop of reserve wines express themselves in a wine of outstanding finesse. Notes of fruit, nuts and toast meld with a delightful creaminess to deliver both richness and freshness all in one glass. Add in organic and bio-dynamic credentials and a rather lovely gift box for the complete package.
Where to buy it: Majestic Wine
Price: £41.99

Drappier Carte d’Or Brut NV Champagne

What: Drappier’s NV Champagne is a bundle of class and good value thanks to its complex mix of red fruits, quince and spice. It’s made up almost entirely of Pinot Noir grapes from the Côte des Bar, 20% of which are reserve wines, which together mean a fuller-bodied wine that’s great with or without food. A terrific wine packed with moreish complexity.
Where to buy it: The Whisky Exchange
Price: £37.95 

Billecart Salmon Brut Reserve

What: Exceptionally elegant, Billecart Salmon’s Brut Reserve is a wonderful entry point to this distinguished house. The combination of three vintages and three grape varieties (Pinot Meunier, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay) results in a crisp blend of apple, citrus and stone fruit flavours, a hint of brioche on the nose, and a long finish. If you’re out to impress, this will not disappoint.
Where to buy it: Drink Supermarket
Price: £39.99

Veuve Clicquot Brut Yellow Label

What: Who doesn’t like the classy ‘yellow label’ branding? But make no mistake that the substance fully matches the style. Grapes from as many as 60 different Crus – including those from high-end reserve wines – go into the blending of Veuve Clicquot’s Brut Yellow Label. There’s power combined with freshness, aromatic intensity mixed with balance, vibrancy with richness, and the purity of yellow and white fruits is matched with vanilla-inflected toastiness.
Where to buy it: Tesco
Price: £40

Laurent-Perrier La Cuvee Brut NV Champagne

What: Laurent-Perrier is one of the largest family-owned Champagne houses for good reason: they know a thing or two about producing top-quality Champagne. Experts consistently praise the balance, finesse and freshness of Laurent-Perrier’s non-vintage Champagne, which is why so many five-star hotels serve it as their go-to aperitif fizz. Delicate citrus white flowers and fresh laundry on the nose lead into an expressive palate of juicy Granny Smith apples and creaminess.
Where to buy it: Ocado
Price: £40

Pommery Brut Royal

What: Beautifully presented, this Champagne is at the upper limit of what you could call ‘cheap’, but watch out in retailers like Majestic for 6-bottle case discounts and promotions. Light and delicate yet also lively, the dominance of Chardonnay in the Pommery Brut Royal brings out notes of delicate white fruit and flowers and a discreet breadiness. The palate of apples, pears, lemons and a steely core delivers generosity and finesse in equal measure, and there’s a soft creamy finish.
Where to buy it: Waitrose Cellar
Price: £40

Prefer your Champagne with a little colour to it? Check out our guide to the best pink Champagnes.