Once you’ve carefully selected your champagnes – or allowed Henri to select them for you – you, your friends and guests will get the greatest enjoyment of them if you know how to store champagne, chill champagne and serve champagne. Read on for everything you need to know about the proper care handling of your beautiful bubbly.
Champagne is more sensitive to temperature and light than most other wines. For that reason, it is typically bottled in a light-resistant, dark green glass. Champagne should be stored between 40 and 60 F and may be kept upright or horizontally.
Ideally non-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. 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.
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.
Flutes per bottle: 5-6
Toasting Trivia: Legend has it that the custom of touching glasses evolved from concerns about poisoning. By one account, clinking glasses together would cause each drink to spill over into the others.