Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Tips for Serving Champagne During the Holiday Season

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During the holidays, many hosts serve champagne at their events to celebrate the season. The bubbly beverage can be very enjoyable, but if you don’t know how to serve it correctly, the gesture can go flat!

Here is a list of the most popular champagne questions answered by The Champagne Information Bureau on how to serve and enjoy the ultimate, luxurious drink (champagne!) this festive season.

How much champagne do you need? Typically, a bottle of champagne serves about seven champagne flutes. When served as an aperitif, allow one bottle for every three or four guests, but at a meal, serve one bottle for every two or three.

How long does it take to perfectly chill a bottle of champagne? Champagne takes around three hours to chill in the fridge. For a quicker result, place the bottle in a bucket filled with equal parts ice and water.  This takes about 30 minutes.  Never put Champagne bottles in the freezer as it will dumb down the aroma and flavors.

When popping a bottle of champagne, what’s the proper etiquette? Be brave. Slant the bottle at a 45 degree angle away from guests.  Untwist (exactly six half turns) and remove the wire muzzle. Grasp the cork firmly with thumb and forefinger and twist the bottle slowly letting the pressure help to push the cork out. It should sigh rather than pop.

How should champagne be served? Champagne is best served in a tulip-shaped glass or a flute. Do not serve in a saucer-shaped glass as the aroma and bubbles will disperse. Serve by holding the glass upright. Pour a small quantity of Champagne in the glass and allow it to settle before filling two-thirds full.

How do I properly drink champagne? Hold the glass by the stem or even better at the base to avoid warming the drink.  Between glasses, store the opened bottle of Champagne in an ice bucket for no more than three hours.  Contrary to popular belief, a silver spoon placed in the neck of an open bottle does not prevent the Champagne going flat.

How should I store champagne? Keep un-opened Champagne horizontally in a cool, dark place away from heat, light and severe temperature variations.

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