How to Open Champagne (The Safe Way)

How to easily open a champagne bottle the safe way. You don't have to be a sommelier. No more flying corks!

What Is Champagne

Champagne is a white or rosé sparkling wine that is typically from Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier grapes. The name is a nod to where producers make the wine: the Champagne region of France,. And yes, some use the terms champagne and sparkling interchangeably, but there is a diff – especially if you fancy AF.

According to EU regulations, producers can only use the Champagne label — legally! — if they produce the wine in the Champagne region of France and adhere to a specific winemaking technique called the méthode champenoise. Champagne winemakers have literally gone to court to protect the name.

How To open Champagne

Uncorking a bottle of Champagne, or something like Prosecco, can be tricky and scary if done incorrectly. And a little unsafe TBH. The average pressure in a bottle of Champagne is about 90 pounds per square inch, which is more than double the average pressure in a car tire

So take proper precautions and use proper technique when attempting to pop bubbly at home. Here’s the safe way to do it:

Chill the Wine

While popping like warm champagne sounds sexy if you are a vampire slayer, you may also need super strength like one too if the wine is warm. So chill. The champagne, not you. Warm or room temp champagne builds up pressure fast! Also, chilled champagne tastes better.

Want to do it quickly? Check out my post on chilling wine fast. I tested 10 different methods.

Remove the Foil

Seems obvious but, yes, remove the foil. Now the wire cage — called a muselet — you can just loosen it or remove it. I take it off. This is dealers choice. I feel having the loose cage on the cork when trying to pop it just makes it harder.

The important part is to not remove the wire cage until you are ready to open the bottle. Remember, 90 pounds of pressure!

Hold the Cork

Hold the cork. You can also place a towel over the cork for more coverage. Personally, I don’t like this method as I feel more comfortable with gripping the cork. You do you.

Angle the Bottle

Take the bottle and hold the cork, or towel, with your dominant hand. Then hold the bottom of the bottle with the other. Then angle the bottle to about 45-degrees

Twist the Bottle

This is the key step. If you are twisting and pulling at the cork, you are going to have less of a grip on it, depending on the angle and position of your hand when it pops. You have more control by rotating the base of the bottle, keeping your dominant hand steady and in place on the cork. Twist the base of the bottle until the cork pops.

How to Store an Open Bottle

Just like Jeannie, the cork doesn’t wanna go back in the bottle! It will be too large. You will need a champagne stopper to keep the bubbles bubbly. It should keep in the fridge for up to 3 days with one.