How to Open a Bottle of Champagne

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 15,195
    Andrew Stover, Wine Director at OYA Restaurant & Lounge in Washington, DC shares the proper techniques for opening a bottle of champagne.

    Andrew Stover

    Andrew Stover, a native of Grand Rapids, Michigan, moved to Washington, DC to attend The George Washington University with a focus in Marketing/Tourism & Hospitality Management. Stover also holds a Sommelier Diploma from the International Sommelier Guild and a Certified Specialist of Wine Certification from the Society of Wine Educators.

    Stover began his foray into wine by visiting local Virginia vineyards. Over the last 8 years, his love of wine has become an obsession and he has combined his love for travel and food by visiting wine regions in Australia, Brazil, New Zealand, Chile, Uruguay, Argentina, Chile, France, Canada and all over the US.

    Stover worked 2 years in the tasting room at Breaux Vineyards in Hillsboro, Virginia conducting wine tastings and tours in 2000-2002. He has consulted with Pintail Yachts in Annapolis on wine dinner cruises and conducts staff wine trainings with La Tasca Spanish Tapas Restaurant. In March of 2006, Stover was hired on as Wine Director and Sommelier for OYA Restaurant & Lounge, where he has revamped the entire wine program making it more food friendly and consumer driven.

    Stover has served 4 years on the Board of Directors for the Washington Area Concierge Association and 3 years as Chair of their annual Charity Gala: Bubbles on the Potomac, which is a sparkling wine tasting event aboard the Odyssey.

    Stover is also an accomplished writer and has published wine articles for Where Magazine, the Howard County Business Monthly and the Complete Event and Meeting Planner, a guide for local event and meeting planners, with tips on wine and food pairings for events. He also publishes a wine blog,

    Most recently, Stover has been hired to teach a food and wine pairing seminar at The George Washington University as part of the Event Management Certificate Program in the GW School of Business.


    """*E$3hFVVVDDDVDVDDD $u:c`"[email protected]"Db~:EVVVV$Andrew Stover: Hi, I am Andrew from OYA Restaurant & Lounge in Washington, DC and today we are discussing tips from a Sommelier. In this clip, I am going to show you how to safely open a bottle of sparkling wine. So, few things that you may need to get started. A corkscrew with knife, just in case your bottle of sparkling wine doesn't have a pull tab as this wine does, because you want to go ahead and make a slice in order to remove the top portion of the metal capsule. You also want to have around a napkin or towel that way when you are getting ready to remove the cork, you will have a little bit more grip and just in case it foams up on you, it will be there to sop up any wine that flies out.

    So, let's get started. First, always make sure that the wine is fully chilled and we are talking about 37 degrees. If it's not quite cold enough, the cork may fly out and the wine will foam up all over you and any guest that might be around. Also, when opening bottles of sparkling wine, remember to keep it away from yourself and other people that might be in a room, because you definitely don't want to hit somebody with the flying cork. It's about eight atmospheres worth of pressure inside most bottles of the sparkling wine and that really could hurt someone. Also if you happen to have any glass plates in your kitchen or anything breakable, at any walls, you probably don't want to be placing the bottle towards those walls because it could break something.

    So, let's do it. Go ahead and remove the foil from the top of the bottle. This one was easy. Again, if it didn't have a pull tab, you would have gotten your corkscrew out and you would made a slice around the bottom of the metal cage here and then you would have just had to pick it back. But most everyday sparkling wines these days seem to be coming with the pull tabs. Sommelier higher in champagnes not so much. Now, here is the tricky part because you want to make sure at all times that you have one thumb over the cork. Just in case it decides to fly out unexpectedly. So, I am going to use my left hand since I am a right-handed kind of guy.

    So, first we have to get off the metal cage. As you can see it has a little little hook here that you need to undo. So, we are going to go ahead and undo it, there, see. Now, you want to also at this point then go around without taking your thumb off and loosen this cage. Okay, see it's almost all the way off. Here is the tricky part. You just want to slide off the metal cage and then put your other thumb on there, just in case again, it wants to fly out. So, I am going to switch back to my left hand and get my napkin out. Place the napkin over the cork and push down. Now, do not pull the cork because if you pull the cork it might break and the last thing you want is a broken cork.

    So, you are going to actually twist the bottom of the bottle, very slowly, while pushing down on the napkin and the cork and it's coming out and we just want to woo -- there we go, voila. You also want to be careful not to pull it out or let it come out too quickly because the bigger the pop, the more carbon dioxide that's being released and that means there will be less bubbles in your wine and you know the bubbles that make the bubbly. So after you got it off, you are ready to serve. Here we go, beautiful and as mentioned before, it's a good idea to have a bucket around just in case you need to keep the wine chilled while you are enjoying it. So there you have it, how to open a bottle of sparkling wine safely. Stay tuned for my next clip where I will show you how to decant a bottle of red wine. $*_jvrtEK QR-03z 1/23/43/43/43/43/43/43/43/43/43/43/43/43/4yoyoh;I,CJOJQJh.


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