How to do Champagne on a prosecco budget: a tour of France’s most famous wine region

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The champagne houses of Épernay and Rheims produce some of the finest fizz in the world, but if you know where to look, there are bargains to be had

Forgive me for sounding a little smug. You would too if you were sitting in stylish lodgings sipping a glass of grand cru minutes away from a prestigious address, the Avenue de Champagne in Épernay, east of Paris. The mile-long avenue is lined with expensive champagne houses, from Moët & Chandon to Perrier-Jouët.

But instead of forking out a fortune, I’m indulging my champagne taste on a prosecco budget. That glass of top quality grand cru? It’s from a half bottle I picked up at the independent producer Mouligneaux-Gourdain for €10 (£8.70).

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