Reader Questions and Answers
A bottle of champagne should be served chilled. Depending on the style, serve champagne between 40 and 45 degrees F., with the best bottles being served at the upper end of the range. Be sure the bottle is chilled before opening since a warm bottle will have more pressure build up, which is more dangerous and will cause some of the sparkle to be lost.
Brut or Extra Dry?
Extra dry is sweeter than brut. Brut translates to ‘raw’ or ‘rough’ and has a lower residual sugar than extra dry. Brut is drier than extra dry!
Scientist Bill Lembeck estimated there are about 49 million bubbles in a bottle of champagne. Other estimates have been even higher.
Champagne is only from the Champagne region of France. Other wine that is bubbly/fizzy should not be called champagne*. It is ‘sparkling wine’, or possibly a designation that points out another specific origination such as cava from Spain or prosecco from Italy or Cremant from areas other than Champagne in France.
Cap or no cap?
Champagne is capitalized when it is referring to the area/region of ‘la Champagne’. It is also capitalized when used with a proper name. It is not capitalized when it refers to the beverage, ‘le champagne’. However, you will find frequent deviations from this rule.