November 7, 2023 | Henri of Henri's Reserve
There is nothing better than serving one of our exquisite family estate champagnes at your holiday soirée. They always pair well with food, and the joie de champagne creates a wonderfully festive atmosphere for all.
Here is a little refresher on getting your champagne from the bottle to the glass in optimal condition to enjoy!
Storage: Always store your champagne away from light and heat! It is more sensitive to temperature and light than most other wine, which is why it’s typically bottled in a light-resistant, dark green glass. Champagne should be stored between 40 and 60 F, which is why a cellar or cool cabinet is usually best.
Chilling: No-vintage Champagne – those with no year printed on the label – should be chilled to 40-45 degrees to bring out the flavor of the wine. This temperature can be attained by placing the bottle in a refrigerator for a couple of hours or a freezer for 15 minutes. Vintage Champagne should be served slightly warmer, at 54 to 57 F. Colder temperatures stun the taste buds, so you won't get your money's worth if you serve ice-cold vintage bubbly!
Finally, the classic way to chill a bottle of Champagne is to place it in an ice bucket, half filled with ice, half with water, for 20 minutes. It looks festive that way, too!
Opening: Take care, mes amis, for the pressure inside a bottle of Champagne is equal to that of a car tire! To open your bottle, remove the foil from the cork and untwist the wire cage. Wrap the neck and cork in a clean cotton dishtowel, angle the bottle away from your beloved guests, hold the cork, and gently twist the base of the bottle. Continue twisting the bottle until the cork eases out of the bottles neck with a pop. Remove the towel and pour!
Serve with Style: Place the glass on a table, or ask someone to hold it for you. Place your right hand at the base of the bottle with your thumb placed into the depression on the bottom (called the punt) and balance the front of the neck on the side of the glass, supported by your left hand.
Try to tilt the glass to its side (if you can). This way, when you pour the champagne it will hit the side of the glass, reducing the speed at which it hits the base of the glass, thus maintaining the bubbly texture. Pour the wine onto the side of the glass, not onto the base. Wait till the bubbles subside and then continue pouring to fill the the glass. This may take up to 4 or 5 pauses in a Champagne flute shaped glass.