It is no secret that champagne is a drink that creates an atmosphere of celebration, joy and fun. However, with all the love of champagne, one should not forget that one should drink it. according to the rules. Sparkling wines, which include classic champagne, are served before meals, both as an aperitif and during meals.
Before drinking champagne should be cooled to a temperature of 7-9 degrees. To do this, a bottle of champagne is served on the table in a bucket of water and crushed ice. Moreover, the bucket is placed next to the table on a special stand. A bottle of champagne should cool down to 7-9 in a few minutes from a storage temperature of 10-15 degrees.
How to open a bottle.
Carefully, without shaking, hold the bottle of champagne at an angle of 45 degrees and, tightly holding the cork, rotate the bottle. There is another trouble-free way: hold the cork with the door and, turning the bottle, open it. By the way, champagne must be opened quietly, because a sharp shot contributes to the rapid evaporation of carbon dioxide from champagne. Decompression with a quick rise from depth adversely affects the quality of the wine. The rapid decay of the game of wine in the glass indicates its poor quality, because the game of good champagne in the glass lasts several hours, and the best champagne wines up to ten hours.
How to pour champagne into glasses
Pour champagne into the glass slowly, directing a trickle of wine on the inclined wall of the glass. The wine is poured in two doses in order to allow the foam to settle. The glass is filled by three quarters. When champagne is poured into the glass, it begins to “play” - bubbles stand out from it. The bubbles should be small and persistent and develop fountain-like from the center of the bottom of the glass, forming a bubble girdle at the walls of the glass, which will remain in the glass for several hours. Large bubbles usually indicate a low quality of wine.
The glass should be held by the bottom of its legs or by the stand of the glass, but just do not wrap your hand around its upper part, because champagne will heat up faster, lose its flavor and stop playing. Champagne glasses should have the shape of a cone, expanding gradually upwards, and then slightly tapering ("Flute" shape).
How to serve champagne correctly
Like any noble wine, champagne should be properly stored before opening the treasured bottle.
At what temperature should champagne be stored.
Champagne should be stored at a temperature of 12-14 degrees Celsius, and better in a room with high humidity. The bottle should be placed on its side. This will prevent the cork from drying out and better preserve the drink.
At what temperature should champagne be served
Now it's time to open the bottle. It is necessary to observe some subtleties. Champagne cannot be served too cold. The cold destroys the bubbles and leaves less flavor. The correct champagne serving temperature is 9-11 degrees Celsius. At this temperature, the aroma of champagne is fully revealed, and ideal bubbles form. With one phrase, the secret to serving champagne can be expressed as follows:
Keep it in a cool place and serve it chilled.
Time to open a bottle of champagne
Opening a bottle of champagne can be a very dramatic and stressful moment. It’s better to do it right, and not stay with a half-empty bottle, in a dirty suit and in a sticky puddle. Firstly, you should never point the neck of a bottle at someone opening. The best way to open the bottle is as follows:
- Put the bottle on a flat surface or press it to the body at an angle of 45 *.
- Remove foil coating
- Unscrew and remove the metal mesh, while holding the cork with your hand so that it does not knock ahead of time.
- Turn the bottle under the cork and wait until you hear the characteristic “sigh” of the cork, then calmly open the cork.
- Pour into glasses should not be centered, but along the edge of the glass, being careful.
Watch a video from the chef on how to perfectly open champagne and pour it into a glass.
Using this technique, you will not injure anyone, avoid losing champagne and get perfect foam and bubbles. After opening, it is better to store champagne in a metal bucket with ice and water. This will allow to maintain its excellent qualities longer.
Serve the right glasses
A bottle of champagne is open and waiting for its finest hour. Time to pour champagne by the glass! There is a subtlety here! Often champagne is poured into ordinary wine glasses. This is a classic mistake. Champagne, poured into ordinary glasses, looks good, but quickly loses all its properties. Glasses for ordinary wine are too wide for champagne, aroma and bubbles evaporate instantly. Champagne should be poured into exactly champagne glasses!
Better to get an inexpensive set of glasses for champagne than to pour a drink into expensive glasses designed for red wine. The perfect champagne glass is shaped like a tulip. The glass is elongated, has an extension in the middle and tapers at the top. This form retains freshness, aroma of the drink longer and promotes the formation of bubbles.
Best Champagne Snacks
Have you ever wondered when it is better to serve champagne? Before, during lunch, or after lunch? Although, we can assume that this depends on personal preferences. It is believed that champagne is best served before or during lunch. It is not recommended to serve champagne for dessert.
Sweet dessert does not go well with champagne and can ruin the whole taste of sparkling wine. In addition, there may be stomach problems. If champagne is served before dinner, then it is worth serving cheese as an appetizer. Various types of cheese and other salty snacks are perfect for sparkling champagne.
If champagne is served during lunch, then the ideal appetizer is seafood, various types of meat or creamy Italian pasta with unsweetened vegetables and herbs. The holiday is over, but there are still half a bottle. How to save the rest of the holiday?
Champagne will retain its properties for several days, provided that you pick up a suitable cork and keep the bottle in the refrigerator. The more the bottle is filled, the longer champagne will retain its properties. How to serve champagne is no longer a big secret, it remains to wait for the holiday and bring all the tips to life.
I propose to watch a very funny video How to not open champagne!
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How to choose champagne
If you intend to meet guests with real champagne, you should pay attention only to drinks made in the French province of Champagne. According to the international classification of alcohol, only wines made in this place from local grapes are entitled to be called champagne. Everything else is just sparkling wines. But since our compatriots are used to calling champagne everything that foams, we will also mean all kinds of sparkling wines under it, regardless of where they were produced.
When choosing sparkling wine, attention is paid not only to where and from which grape variety it is produced, but also how much sugar it contains. Wines with a low content of this sweet product are considered to be more noble, but more sweet champagne samples are still popular.
Depending on the sugar content, champagne wines are divided into the following categories:
- sweet wines with a sugar content of 50 g / l or more (Doux),
- slightly less sweet wines with a sugar content of 33-50 g / l (Demi-sec or Rich),
- semi-sweet and partially semi-dry wines (Sec or Dry) with a sugar content of 17-35 g / l,
- dry and semi-dry wines (Extra sec or Extra-dry) with a sweet product content of 12-20 g / l,
- Brut (Brut) - a special type of sparkling wine, the sugar content of which is exactly 15 g / l, no more and no less,
- dry wines containing not more than 6 g of sugar per 1 liter (Non-dosage or Brut nature).
In our country, the most popular are semi-dry and semi-sweet champagne. By choosing them, you have a chance to please most of the guests. But if among them special champagne connoisseurs are expected, it will not hurt to buy a bottle of brutus.
Sparkling wines (like regular grape wines) also vary in color. It depends on the grape variety from which the drink is made.
An interesting fact: the most expensive champagne was worth 270 thousand US dollars, it was sold at auction.
How to serve champagne
The most common mistakesrelated to serving champagne are:
- serving wine in an ice bucket,
- opening a bottle of cotton,
- pouring the drink into glasses so that it foams as much as possible,
- serving champagne with crystal wine glasses,
- offer as a snack to champagne salted salmon or other fish.
But what really right?
- Champagne is served chilled to 7-9 degrees, but not frozen.
- The bucket is filled not with ice, but with water, into which pieces of ice are added so that it remains cold for as long as possible, after which a bottle of wine is immersed in it. The bucket itself is placed on a separate table, and not on the dining table. Nearby often have a vase of flowers, which also should not be in the center of the dining table.
- The bottle should be opened without cotton. First, the protective mesh and foil are removed from it, then the cork is already removed. To do this, the bottle is tilted at an angle of 45 degrees and rotated, holding the cork with the other hand so that it would not “shoot”. If you are afraid that the bottle will slip out of your hands, you can pick up a napkin, this will not be a violation of etiquette. The cork should come out silently. It is this discovery of champagne that is truly chic. Yes, and do not try to shake the bottle - nothing good will come of it.
- If the waiter serves the table, do not pull the bottle out of his hands to demonstrate to everyone how skillfully you can open champagne. According to etiquette, at a reception or in a public institution, the opening of champagne is the sole right of the waiter, do not bother him.
- If a group of friends has gathered at the table, that is, there is no waiter nearby, the right to open champagne passes to any of the men at the table. It is logical if the owner of the house (the head of the family) takes this honorable duty. It is possible that some of the participants in the celebration (for example, the hostess) will have an assumption (even if justified) that she would have done the task better than the gentleman. But, alas, it is inadmissible to dispute with him this right. You will have to forget about your skills and relax, feeling at least for the time being a true lady.
- Pour champagne along the edge of the glass, tilting it slightly. It is customary to do this in two steps: first they pour a little, then wait for the foam to come off and, finally, add the wine. Of course, not to the brim - glasses fill three quarters.
- If you have expensive crystal wine glasses stored in your sideboard, bought by your grandmother just for this reason, forget about them. Neither crystal nor richly decorated glasses go with champagne. Need containers of thin transparent glass. From the decor, only a thin golden border is acceptable, but without it, too, is good. The shape of the glasses is important: they should be thin, tall, on a high leg. They can be replaced with ordinary wine glasses, which look almost the same, but they themselves are slightly wider. The main thing is the leg: thin, long - without it in any way.
At receptions champagne is served already spilled. If the waiter came up to you with a tray, the lady should take the first glass, only after that (or after the lady refuses wine) her cavalier can extend a hand behind the glass. By the way, serving a lady a glass of champagne on the part of the man will be a bad man, so do not rush to serve your companion with such a seemingly polite action.
Champagne can be served as an aperitif, digestif or accompaniment drink (that is, to the table). In this regard, sparkling wine is universal. One has only to understand that dry or semi-dry sparkling wine is more suitable as an accompaniment drink, and after lunch, it is a good idea to serve sweet or semi-sweet dessert.
An interesting fact: the record distance that the cork flew when opening a bottle of champagne is 54 meters. From the point of view of etiquette, this is an anti-record, so do not repeat it.
How to drink champagne
The rules for drinking champagne are somewhat simpler than the rules for serving it.
- Hold the glass by the leg so as not to heat the wine.
- Do not put a glass if you intend to continue tasting. This is a sign that the drink can be removed. If you put the glass inadvertently, while the drink was to your taste, and you would like to finish it, take a new glass, but forget about the set on the table.
- A glass of champagne is usually held in the left hand.
- If champagne was served as an aperitif, when inviting guests to the table, all glasses with champagne should be immediately dropped onto the buffet table, regardless of how much drink was left in them.
Dilute champagne, drink, mix with other drinks is not worth it - experts on etiquette and admirers of noble wines will not understand you.
Now you know all the rules regarding how to serve and drink champagne, it remains to determine the appetizers for it.
An interesting fact: the birthday of champagne is considered August 4, and this holiday is worth it to celebrate! We also invite you to meet with new rules of etiquette related to the reception of guests.
What to have champagne
First of all, I would like to say which champagne snacks are categorically unsuitable:
- any pickles, including pickled mushrooms, pickled cucumbers and snacks made from them (azu, vinaigrette, Olivier salad in a modern interpretation),
- first meal,
- salted fish (not only herring, but also salmon, as well as the notorious salad "Herring under a fur coat"),
- fatty meat (for example, French pork, lard, bacon),
- sausages and smoked meats (both fish and meat),
- dishes seasoned with hot sauce, including mayonnaise,
- dishes with hot vegetables and seasonings (bitter pepper, onion, garlic),
- Eastern sweets
- bitter chocolate.
You probably noticed that almost all the dishes that we used to cook for the New Year's table were on the list of unsuitable dishes for champagne. So what remains to offer guests to sparkling wine? In fact, the choice is still quite wide.
If you use champagne as an escort drink, it is advisable to choose snacks for it taking into account its variety.
To dry sparkling wine and brutus fit:
- seafood (cooked in any way, especially with cream, cheese),
- caviar (you can make sandwiches with it),
- other sandwiches with pineapple, cheese, seafood, having a simple composition,
Semi-dry Champagne can be offered:
- poultry dishes,
- cheese cutting
Recently, Japanese cuisine (sushi, rolls) and even pizza were often offered to him. As it turned out, they do not spoil the taste of wine.
If you have on your table pink sparkling wine, offer him a bird or veal. This is the only kind of champagne that lamb will fit.
Semisweet wine is often served as a digestif or aperitif. If it is offered to guests before lunch or at lunch, it is good to submit it:
- liver paste (better from duck liver),
- fruit and berry pie
If you offered your guests sweet or semi-sweet champagne after lunch or dinner, give it a dessert:
- a berry-filled cake or cake,
- fruit salad or even just strawberries with cream,
- ice cream,
- candied fruit
- milk chocolate (you can white).
Just fruit and cheese slices will be appropriate in any case.
If you are thinking about what foods to prepare for champagne for the New Year or even for the holiday table, we recommend that you take a closer look at salads without mayonnaise, as well as the famous Caesar salad, traditional Christmas dishes from baked bird. If you can not imagine a holiday without Olivier salad, we recommend making it from chicken and fresh cucumber, seasoning with sauce based on sour cream or Greek yogurt.
Champagne is one of the most popular wines; it usually costs not cheap. It would be sad to spoil his taste with poorly selected appetizers. Going to a celebration, it will not hurt to learn the basic rules of drinking champagne in a noble society so that you are not considered an ignoramus. Everything that is important to know about champagne, we tried to collect in one material. We hope the information was curious and useful. Have a nice holidays!