The Best Fizz For The Festive Season

When it comes to knowing the latest and best-value wines on the market, Will Sandbach – founder of wine tourism website Vind – has his ear to the ground. With the festive season just around the corner, here are his 11 favourite bottles of fizz, from champagne and English sparkling to alcohol-free Prosecco…

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CHAMPAGNE

Charles Lafitte Premier Cru Champagne, £47

Country: France

Why I Like It: This bottle is a premier cru champagne from some of the top vineyards in Champagne. Fresh, yet sophisticated with biscuit-y characteristics, it’s delicate on the palate and has a lovely length of flavour. 

Pair It With: A creamy soup starter.

Available here

Champagne Pierre Mignon Grande Réserve, Premier Cru, £28.50

Country: France

Why I Like It: This champagne is well balanced with hints of citrus on the nose overlaid by touches of biscuit and brioche. It has a larger percentage of pinot meunier in the blend (80%) which brings about a smoothness. For the price, it’s a great quality champagne.

Pair It With: Any kind of mushroom dish, especially appetisers. 

Available here

Moët & Chandon Champagne Brut Impérial NV, £39

Country: France

Why I Like It: Moët & Chandon has been the world's most loved champagne since 1743 and with good reason. Its Brut Impérial has a perfect balance of pinot noir, chardonnay and pinot meunier, with elegant notes of pear and citrus, plus brioche characteristics. 

Pair It With: Canapés at a drinks party. 

Available here

ALTERNATIVE OPTIONS

Clos Malverne Sauvignon Blanc Sparkling Brut, £14.25

Country: South Africa

Why I Like It: This sauvignon blanc sparkling wine is crisp and fruitful. It has classic sauvignon notes of litchis, pears and gooseberries. South African sauvignon is great but you don’t often see sparkling sauvignon, so give it a go. Clos Malverne is also a beautiful estate in South Africa.

Pair It With: Nuts, nibbles and crisps.

Available here

Winemaster's Lot English Sparkling, £19.99

Country: England

Why I Like It: Aldi has excellent value wine. This sparkler is fruity and fresh, with fine bubbles and an enticingly soft mousse on the palate. It’s English and good value for a UK sparkling wine. 

Pair It With: Any fish dish.

Available here

Entre Vinyes Pet Nat, Penedes, £21

Country: Spain

Why I Like It: Pet Nat is super – I really love it. This one has a floral nose and a fresh palate of apricot and bruised apples. Accessible, affordable and very quaffable.

Pair It With: Truffle crisps.

Available here

The Guv'nor Sparkling, Spain, £7.99

Country: Spain

Why I Like It: The Guv'nor Sparkling won an International Wine Challenge award earlier this year. It’s made from a local grape variety, viura, and chardonnay. Expect delicate aromas of blossom, vanilla and stone-fruit and citrus flavours, with a deliciously creamy finish.

Pair It With: Salty nuts and any savoury appetisers.

Available here


Cap Classique Brut Rosé Sparkling Wine, £20

Country: South Africa

Why I Like It: Van Hunks are doing a great job with their sparklers. This brut sparkling rosé has a rich and long flavourful finish. The pink colour and vivacious cascading bubbles make it a great entertaining option.

Pair It With: Simply on its own for festive drinks.

Available here

Tesco Finest 1531 Blanquette De Limoux 75Cl, £9.50

Country: France

Why I Like It: Blanquette de Limoux was first created by Benedictine monks and is believed to be the oldest sparkling wine in the world. Tesco’s creation has been aged in bottle for 12 months to produce complex flavours of peach and green apples, with a toasted brioche finish.

Pair It With: Crab, lobster and other fish. 

Available here

Noble Hill Wine Estate Brut Nature Blanc de Blancs, £19.75

Country: South Africa

Why I Like It: The structure on this wine is linear with racy acidity balanced by rich fruit. The bubbles are elegant and finely formed, with just enough fizz to start a celebration of any occasion. The grapes have been aged on the lees for 36 months with crisp citrus and biscuit aromas.

Pair It With: White fish and scallops.

Available here

Pale Fox, Alcohol Free Prosecco, £19.95

Country: Italy

Why I Like It: Not everyone wants to drink and this is a great sparkling alternative. Pale Fox’s alcohol-free prosecco is made from a blend of pinot grigio and the signature Prosecco grapes, which are used to make the classic Prosecco before removing the alcohol. The result is a complex and celebratory drink with an extra dry balance of acidity, fruit and yeasty notes.

Pair It With: Anything you would have prosecco with, like salty snacks and starters. 

Available here

For more information and wine recommendations, visit Vind.Wine

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