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Champagne Basics

It’s that time of year where we all like to celebrate the New Year with a little bottle of bubbly. There are many varieties you can choose from, and the task to find a good bottle of champagne could be a daunting one if you don’t know what you are looking for. So before you

It’s that time of year where we all like to celebrate the New Year with a little bottle of bubbly. There are many varieties you can choose from, and the task to find a good bottle of champagne could be a daunting one if you don’t know what you are looking for. So before you pick a random bottle of champagne off of the liquor store shelves, load up on a few champagne basics just in time for New Year’s Eve.

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(Image source: http://wikipedia.com/)

If it’s not from France, it’s not Champagne?

Champagne is a sparkling wine produced from grapes grown in the Champagne region of France. Prosecco, for example, is another sparkling wine that is made in Italy. Whereas, Cava comes from various regions in Spain.

Pick Your Category

Champagne and sparkling wines are categorized as Brut, Extra Brut, Extra Dry, Sec, and Demi-Sec. Brut is considered the most common style because it pairs well with almost any type of food. Oddly, Brut is a lot drier than Extra Dry. Extra brut and brut are fairly dry and crisp; so if you prefer something on the sweet side, you will want to go with demi-sec or sec, especially if you will be enjoying dessert.

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(Image source: http://wines.about.com/)

Keep it chill!

There is nothing tastier than a cold glass of champs. Champagne and all sparkling wines should be well-chilled. Experts recommend chilling your bottle of bubbly between 40-50 degrees. When champagne or sparkling wine is well-chilled, its flavors and bubbles are more distinct.

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(Image source: http://huffingtonpost.com/)

Open with care

Popping the cork is always greeted with anxious anticipation. Let your celebration begin by first removing the foil and loosening the wire cage. Keep a firm grip on the cork so that it doesn’t pop off. Slowly twist the bottle until the cork is almost out of the bottle. Once you feel the cork coming loose, pull it out carefully using the entire palm of your hand. Hold the cork over the opened bottle for a few seconds to make sure that the foam doesn’t bubble over. Serve cold and toast to the New Year!