French researchers have figured out how to keep your champagne robust with bubbles according to a new study published in the August 11 print edition of the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.
Gerard Liger-Belair, a professor at the University of Reims and author of Uncorked: the Science of Champagne, led the study with a team of scientists and found "a beer-like way of serving" champagne at lower temperatures preserved the bubbles or CO2 best.
Pouring the champagne slowly into an angled glass "impacted its concentration of dissolved CO2 significantly less. Moreover, the higher the champagne temperature is, the higher its loss of dissolved CO2 during the pouring process, which finally constitutes the first analytical proof that low temperatures prolong the drink's chill and helps it to retain its effervescence during the pouring process," noted Ligger Belair et al.
On August 13, internationally renowned British champagne and sparkling wine expert Tom Stevenson told the prestigious wine resource Decanter.com, "Pouring Champagne like a lager is seen as a really naff way to serve it. You would not see a sommelier doing it in a million years," expressing another opinion on the matter.
"Pouring it like the sommeliers do, does you a favour by letting the free CO2 escape from the glass so the bubbles don't get up your nose," explained Stevenson, author of The World Encyclopedia of Champagne and Sparkling Wine, the Annual Champagne and Sparkling Wine Guide, Sotheby's Wine Encyclopedia and the definitive Wines of Alsace reference book.
Perhaps you want to test it out for yourself. Here are some tips from the wine vlog IntoWine.com along with Belair's teams beer-like pour recommendation to help you get the most bubbles out of your champagne:
- First, chill the bottle to four to seven degrees Celsius. This requires 3-4 hours of refrigeration or 30 minutes in an ice bucket to get your champagne to the proper pouring temperature.
- Second, open the bottle by holding it away from anyone at a 45-degree angle. "Hold the cork and gently turn the bottle in one direction. Turn the bottle and not the cork. The cork should not pop. You waste bubbles when you pop the cork."
- Finally pour like a beer, slowly into an angled glass.
Full study, "On the Losses of Dissolved CO2 during Champagne Serving": http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jf101239w.