Nothing rings in a special celebration quite like a perfect glass of chilled sparkling wine. Luckily, there’s no need to be intimidated by a bottle of bubbly with our handy-dandy guide to this effervescent beverage. We’ll cover two options for how to open a champagne bottle, a no-fuss way, and a party trick method plus some general helpful tips. Pop, fizz, clink.
Option #1: Traditional Opening
To turn any party into a celebration, add a little bubbly. To open without fuss, it’s best to start with a bottle of chilled cava, prosecco, champagne or your choice of sparkling wine. If possible, it’s optimal to set your wine fridge to 55 degrees for this purpose. Then, dive right into our steps for opening a bottle safely.
Step #1: Fantastic Foil
Most sparkling wines come with a gold foil topper. Some have a tab for simple removal while others require a small knife or wine key to pierce the foil. Either way, remove that foil adornment and discard.
Step #2: Wire Cage
Next, remove the wire cage that protects the champagne cork. There will be a key you can twist to loosen the wire. Once it’s loose enough, carefully remove and discard.
Step #3: Towel Twist
Grab a hand towel or kitchen towel for our next step. Then, place one hand on the bottom of the bottle and another with the towel on the cork. Slowly twist your bottom hand until you hear a soft popping noise. That’s when you can use the towel to free the cork and set aside.
Step #4: Perfect Pour
Finally, it’s best to pour an inch or so of bubbly into each glass, then go back and add more once the fizzing has settled a bit. Now you have the steps to master the easy way to open a bottle of champagne.
Option #2: Sabering (Opening With A Knife)
For a little more fanfare, open your sparkling wine with a “saber” or knife method. Again, in this instance the champagne is best when chilled to about 55 degrees. Be sure to have a Chef’s knife with you for this choice. It’s is a killer party trick, just be sure to practice on some less expensive varieties before you bust out the good stuff.
Step #1: Prep Step
To begin, just like the first option, remove the foil wrap and wire cage. Discard or set aside.
Step #2: All About Angles
With one hand. angle the bottom of your bottle at about 45 degrees from a hard surface like a table. Be sure to hold the bottle near the base not near the neck. Then, determine where the blade hits the cork at an angle of 45 degrees.
Step #3: Beautiful Blade
Using the blunt side of the Chef’s knife, run the blade up the bottle neck in a smooth motion keeping it at that 45 degree mark. Be sure to slide it up with a quick powerful punch until you hit the lower lip of the bottle firmly. If you do this correctly, the whole cork and glass ring will blast off along with some bubbly to mark the occasion. It can be a super fun way to ramp up your party.
Step #4: Careful Pour
Now that you’re ready to enjoy, be extremely careful pouring since the bottle is now sharp glass with no protective rim. We recommend pouring an inch or so into a glass before moving onto others; then, circle back to top it off once bubbles have faded slightly.
Just so your party goes off without a hitch, we wanted to add a couple quick tips for your best bubbly. Plan on 3-4 drinks per person for your fete; each bottle of champagne contains roughly 5 glasses so get prepared ahead of time using that information. Also, for guests drinking more slowly, consider adding a fresh raspberry or blackberry to their glass to re-awaken the bubbles. This little touch adds a lot of elegance and a quick hit of fresh fruit flavor. Also, it’s best to enjoy your sparkling wine the night that you open it for best results so it doesn’t get flat.
Overall, we hope you’ve enjoyed our fun guide for opening champagne two ways. Whether for mimosas at brunch, champagne cupcakes, or New Year’s Eve toasting, bubbly truly makes everything better. Cheers to your future entertaining!