saber champagne

Sabering Champagne

Sabering champagne or sabrage is a technique for opening a bottle with a saber (or other smooth object) that is used in ceremonial events. The technique is believed to be from the Napoleonic era. Legends indicate when Napoleon’s troops were provided with bottles of champagne after a victory, they would open them with their sabers. The process involves sliding the blunt edge of a knife or saber along the bottle and striking the collar at the neck so that the collar breaks cleanly away. The collar and the cork remain together and propel several feet in the air. A champagne sword is made especially for the practice, but in reality it can be accomplished using a butter knife, spoon, spatula or even the bottom of a champagne glass. It is very important that all safety measures are taken. Do not try this on your own.

  • Chill the champagne or other traditional method sparkling wine.
  • Completely remove the foil capsule.
  • Reposition the cage at the first lip of the bottle. The cage can be completely removed, but care must be taken to keep pressure on the cork so it does not inadvertently fly out until you are ready to perform the procedure.
  • Obtain the saber (or butter knife, etc.)
  • Hold the bottle at a 45 degree angle with the seam of the bottle facing up.
  • Slide the blunt edge of the saber smoothly along the seam at a 45 degree angle from the bottle and strike the neck at the collar of the bottle. The cork, cage and collar should propel 8 to 30 feet or so.







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