Though you think you might know exactly how to open a bottle of Champagne, it turns out that you’ve probably not got it quite as right as you think.
Champagne is rightly associated with celebration, and if the occasion calls for it then we often like to pop bottles as dramatically as possible. But really, opening champagne the boring way is actually the preferred method. In fact, it’s better to slowly twist the cork out rather than letting it fly; if you do it right, you’ll hear a soft sigh rather than a loud pop.
But… we’re well aware that this isn’t nearly as fun. If you’re looking to cover all your bases, we’d recommend making a splash and popping the first bottle; save the “correct”, quieter method for the second, (and third, and fourth).
Sometimes, though, maybe even popping a cork with a bang isn’t quite enough. What to do when you want to make even more of an impression? Well, your hands aren’t the only things you can use to open a bottle of Champagne…
This one is an awesome party trick, and is actually pretty simple to master. First you’ll need to remove the whole label covering the neck and search for the slight, almost imperceptible seam that runs the length of the bottle and signifies where it was “put together”.
Then take a wine glass, (champagne flutes are, conveniently, most effective) and use the rim of it to rub, lightly, over the seam on the neck of the bottle. Eventually the top of the bottle should break seamlessly off. Once you’re good, you’ll only need to go over it with the glass four or five times; or so we’ve heard.
*Ed: no, we couldn’t find a sword
Alright, technically it’s a “saber”, but sword sounds so much cooler, no? “Sabrage” is actually a long established method of opening champagne that apparently dates back to the days of Napoleon, who would celebrate victories by popping his bottles using a weapon.
As with a champagne flute, you’ll need to locate the seam and run your saber along it to get a feel for it. Once you do, however, you’ll need to forcefully run it up to the point where it meets the rim at the top, (the bottles weakest point). Done smoothly, with the right amount of force, it’ll bring the top of the bottle clean off.
Don’t have a sword lying around? You can always create a makeshift “saber” with more pedestrian, less combat ready utensils too. Spoons and butter knives work well, though for this one you might need to apply more power.
You might also want to practice this one in private a few times as well. You don’t want to draw attention to yourself in the middle of a party just to end up hitting a champagne bottle with a spoon in front of everyone.
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