Creating a Sense of Occasion
There is a school of thought which believes that Champagne should be drunk from a wine glass. However, if you have spent a vast sum on a bottle of Champagne to celebrate an important event it is important that the glasses match the occasion. After all, you wouldn’t wear a pair of scruffy jeans to dine at the Ritz would you?
Opening a bottle of champagne is very theatrical and as with all good theatrical events, the champagne glasses as props need to support the drama.
Have you have ever wondered what causes the cork to pop in a champagne bottle? The pressure inside the bottle is approximately five times greater than that in the room. Removing the cork releases the pressure and results in those magical, celebratory bubbles.
Choosing Champagne Glasses to Optimise Taste
The bubbles should originate at the base of the glass and will become faster and larger as they rise. They cause liquid to move to the top of the glass, and then return back down the sides. The movement is greatest in taller glasses which is why many champagne glasses are tall and thin. The aromatic molecules attach themselves to the bubbles and are transported by them to the surface of the liquid.
In a flat coupe glass the bubbles don’t tend to rise very far. This means that the flavour takes time to reach the surface, and then, unfortunately, escapes into the space above it quickly.
The advantage of the thin flute is that it can deliver a lot of flavour very quickly. The lack of space at the top of the glass means that little flavour is lost to its surroundings.
Although fluted glasses are available in a wide range of styles the most important aspect of their design is that the person drinking from them should feel good. Champagne is usually drunk to celebrate a special occasion, so it is important that the champagne glass matches and enhances this celebratory experience.
For a classic, straight-sided champagne glass, the Riedel Vinum Champagne 4016/08 is both attractive and sophisticated. It would enhance any festive occasion and is the perfect vessel for a glass of champagne.
Another delightful champagne glass is the Axiom 6oz (17cl) Flute Champagne which is practical as well as attractive. It has a high resistant rim (50% more than standard glass) which means that the chances of it being chipped is minimised.
If you are looking for a more opulent style why not use the Elegance Coupe Champagne 5oz (16cl). These original glasses will add glamour to any special event and can be used for desserts and cocktails as well as champagne.
Glasses for Mature Champagne
Whilst both the Elegance Coupe Champagne glass or Axiom Flute Champagne glasses are suitable for young wines for older champagne, it is better to use champagne glasses which curve inwards at the top, such as the Elisa Champagne Flute. As a rule of thumb, the more mature the champagne the more the glass should curve inwards in order to preserve the taste.
When serving champagne don’t forget to fill the champagne glass only halfway up so that the bubbles look their best.