• What is a Wine Club? Should I Join One?

    Being new to the world of wine can put you in a daunting and difficult position. Many times individuals are simply looking to enjoy the types of wine that they love or to explore new tastes and flavors in wine.

    With all the variations of wine that are available on shelf and market, it is a challenge trying to find one that you enjoy let alone love experiencing. To actually find a wine that you love, you can actually join a wine club! This article describes all you need to know about a wine club and why you should join one.

    What is a wine club?

    A wine club is like a gateway to the universe of wine. Designed to provide wine drinkers and lovers a series of wine bottles on a monthly or quarterly basis, it can be rather convenient because wine drinkers do not have to find the wine on their own. 

    Often having themes, wine clubs will usually provide recipients with different types of wine they think are worth trying. Wines provided are red wines, white wines or a mixture of both. 

    You can join a wine club that is offered by vineyards, specialty wine shops or independent bodies. However, once you are exposed to one wine club and have grown your palate to enjoy more varieties, there are specific clubs that offer different stylistic variations. 

    Variations such as grape varieties and wine regions are among selections.

    If you join a wine club, you may also gain access to high-end-wine culture. Costs to join a wine club usually depends on the frequency of shipping, number of bottles per month and so on. For example, the Napa Valley Reserve is an exclusive wine club that has a USD150,000 membership fee! Don’t worry, not all wine clubs cost that much. There is a wine club for every drinker and every wine budget.

    How to choose a wine club?

    The first step in joining a wine club is to actually choose your wine club. Remember that different clubs have different selections of wine and you have to check out their member benefits and exclusivity. It is likely that a different winery will be featured each month and certain selections of wines will be shipped out accordingly. 

    Usually, wine club members receive two to four shipments of wine per year, which is about one case per year. Depending on the club, bottles of wine that are shipped out can be customized. Let’s say you prefer red to white wine. Check to see if you can choose only red. 

    You may also want to check if you can reorder wine from a past wine club feature. Wine clubs can often reorder wine from wineries at a discounted price. 

    What is a Wine Club? Should I Join One? wine club 1
    Photo by Edward Howell on Unsplash

    Features like that are what you should be looking out for before joining a wine club. 

    Pros of joining a wine club

    If you are unsure about whether a wine club would be a good fit for you, read on to find out the benefits of joining a wine club. 

    Saves you time

    If you have ever stepped into a wine store or a winery, it is likely that you would immediately feel overwhelmed. With so many selections and varieties to choose from, the unlimited selection of wines can leave you feeling rather confused. 

    If you join a wine club, it will help you specially curate a selection of wines that will suit your taste, leaving things simple, easy and saves you time. 

    You do not have to head to the wine shop or carry the wine all the way home and instead, the bottles are delivered right to your doorstep! 

    Access to discounts

    Usually, wine clubs offer members exclusive discounts and pricing on wines and have cheaper or free delivery to a place of your choice. You will also be able to access, as a wine club member, limited release wines and likely free tickets to wine tasting events. 

    You can save a lot of money on wine when you purchase bottles through a wine club. 

    Discover new wines 

    As the selection of wines is specially curated to suit your taste buds, a wine club can introduce you to something new. Usually, an in house sommelier will pick out the wine for you to taste and will match your palate quite nicely. What is a sommelier? Someone who’s whole career is about wine, be it sparkling or not so do not worry about selections going wrong. 

    This will remove your decision making process when it comes to wine and offer you a (usually) delightful surprise. 

    Without a wine club, some people will find themselves in a wine rut and end up purchasing the same old bottle every day. There are so many varieties of wine, do not limit yourself and stay open to new wine discoveries! 

    Great flexibility

    Wine clubs usually have a few options for you to choose from, based on your drinking habits. You can specifically select what you love drinking or what you want to be delivered to your doorstep. Wine clubs even allow you to select the timing of each delivery. If you anticipate that you will be drinking more wine during the holiday season like during Christmas, you can order more bottles of wine for then. 

    What is a Wine Club? Should I Join One? in the wine club
    Image by press 👍 and ⭐ from Pixabay

    Gain rewards

    Certain wine clubs have member loyalty and rewards programs. Just like how it works with other membership reward points, you will be rewarded with points or credit every time you make a wine purchase. 

    Keep wine or champagne on hand for celebrations

    Champagne is also a type of wine just that it is sparkling and comes from the region of Champagne in France. When celebrating or when there is an exciting event, it is always extra nice to have a bottle of champagne on hand. 

    When you subscribe to a wine club or even a champagne club like Fizz Champagne Bubbles Club, you are ensured a few bottles of champagne or wine at hand. A moment’s notice to celebrate something? No problem! Just pop open a bottle! 

    Cons of joining a wine club

    There are certain things to look out for when joining a wine club. Below is a list of disadvantages. 

    Hidden fees 

    You have to keep an eye out for hidden fees. Sometimes there are hidden consultation costs when joining a wine club. The cost of shipping and consultation should be included in the membership price or should be stated upfront before you sign up. 

    You should also ask about the minimum number of months to belong to a wine club before you are qualified for certain discounts and whether there is a penalty for cancellation of memberships. 

    Cancellation of membership

    There are some wine clubs that allow you to cancel your membership at any point in time. Some, however, require that you go through a minimum number of shipments or wine bottles before allowing you to cancel. 

    Weather and wine delivery

    Due to fluctuating temperatures or extreme weather conditions, wine clubs may not deliver year round. It is more expensive to ship wine during the summer months as extra and special care is needed to prevent the wines from overheating, thus, spoiling. 

    Wine storage 

    There are times when you may find it difficult to keep up with consumption. Some wine clubs may send you more wine than you can drink. What a nice problem to have! 

    The thing to remember here though, is that wine can spoil easily if not stored properly. Ensure you have ample wine storage space before subscribing to a wine club. 

    Is a wine club worth it?

    If you pick the right wine club, it is definitely worth it. Joining any time of the year is certainly fun and if you drink a lot of wine, you will save a lot of money. If you don’t drink a lot of wine, it might not be worth it and you will do better with walking into your local wine store occasionally. 

    You also have to ensure that you join the right wine club that suits your personal style, budget and taste to ensure that your membership is worth it. If you commit to a wine club that does not gel well with you or for whatever reason want to call it quits, you want to be able to get out of the membership fairly easily. Do the research on a wine club before joining it.

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    Best wine club to join 

    Just like walking into a wine shop or winery gives you access to many types of wine, there are also all kinds of wine clubs worth joining. Finding a wine club that is worth your money and time is everything. 

    One of the best wine clubs is the Fizz Champagne Bubbles Club. With all the perks and none of the hassle that comes with picking out wine, you subscribe to most of the benefits as stated above. 

    If you face a situation where you need to pause your membership, you can just email the club to do so and you get to choose between three different packages for special, hand-selected champagne. Plus point, the Fizz Champagne Bubbles Club provides ample access to high end champagne and wine! 


    Joining a wine club can be very beneficial, especially if you are a wine enthusiast or are beginning to show an interest in wine. It will enlarge your knowledge about wine and introduce your palate to many different types of wine as well as save time and money! The many benefits of joining a wine club outweigh the disadvantages but you should always still be careful and read all the terms and conditions before joining a wine club. Find a wine club that suits your taste buds today.

  • What is A Sommelier? Be a Wine Master!

    A sommelier, or in its English translation ‘wine steward’, is likely one of those career paths that most pay little attention to. Unbeknownst to many, a sommelier is one of the highest paying jobs you can find in the hospitality industry. A wine steward gets an annual salary of 55,000 USD for a level 1 sommelier which is the career’s lowest certification. At its highest and most lucrative, master sommeliers can earn more than 150,000 USD per year! 

    What is A Sommelier? Be a Wine Master! professional wine tester 1
    Photo by Helena Lopes from Pexels

    But make no mistake, earning the master sommelier’s title is no walk in the park and the skills expected of a master are no small talk either. So what is a sommelier and what do they do? In this article, you will find out all you need to know about sommelier and what it takes to become one!

    What does a sommelier do?

    Historically speaking, a sommelier is a wine expert whose service is reserved only for royalty, notably in France. Though the service of a sommelier is no longer limited to only royalty and the wealthy, the expertise of a sommelier remains unchanged. To put it simply, a sommelier is a professional wine taster. 

    As a specialist wine expert, a sommelier has both vast and depths of knowledge when it comes to wine. In terms of information alone, a sommelier is able to elaborate on the many facets of wine-tasting and wine-making.

    The types of grapes used, the region of origin of said grapes, the specific vineyard they were grown, its rating and even the year of production. A sommelier will need to know all the types of champagne and jargon used in the industry. 

    Outside of the theory section of knowledge required of a sommelier, he or she must be able to transfer that knowledge to practical use. This means that a sommelier must be able to draw upon their vast understanding of wine and use it to identify and classify wine.

    They do it through sight, smell and taste.

    Having trained and developed an extremely refined palate for wine-tasting, sommeliers are then able to provide services that will enhance a restaurant’s service. Working sommeliers are usually required to develop wine lists for the restaurant that they work for or with.

    Wine professionals will work closely with the chefs and the owner to create and curate a selection of wine that matches the menu and style of the restaurant.

    This brings us to a sommelier’s second most commonly known skill, matching food and wine. Oftentimes it is only at fine-dining restaurants that the value of a sommelier really shines.

    A sommelier’s knowledge on wine and food enables him or her to best recommend wine that will match the food ordered by customers. Depending on the type of vegetables, meat or even cheese that the customer has ordered, a sommelier is able to best enhance the customer’s experience by recommending the most suitable wine.

    It is for these very reasons that fine dining restaurants spend hundreds of thousands a year to add a new layer of luxury to the customer’s experience with a sommelier’s service. Of course, the job of a sommelier does not end there. 

    From listing, ordering, serving and maintaining, it is a sommelier’s duty to ensure that the wine is always good and always available.

    How to become a sommelier?

    A sommelier seems like a really fun job to have! How do I sign up to be one? 

    Well, this is easier said than done. Wine stewards are considered one of the top-ranking positions in the world of hospitality, which means training to be one is not a simple task.

    There are typically two pathways when it comes to becoming a sommelier and both require a high degree of self-motivated learning of the industry.

    Likely the best and easiest way to start is to find work on the service team of a fine dining restaurant. As sommeliers are required to have in-depth knowledge on how restaurants function, working at the front-of-house is the easiest way to gain this knowledge. 

    Additionally, working in a restaurant will enable you to better learn the ropes of serving customers, another crucial part of being a sommelier. From here, it is very much possible for you to climb your way to becoming a sommelier.

    What is A Sommelier? Be a Wine Master! what is a sommelier
    Image by Matteo Orlandi from Pixabay

    What education is needed to become a sommelier?

    The second way to achieve a sommelier title, and this is the more lucrative method, is to get yourself certified. Certification requires you to go through theoretical and academic training, followed by rigorous training and testing. The study of wine history, manufacturing process, profiling and of course, a lot of tasting.

    Currently, in the industry, there are two organizations that provide recognized sommelier training and certification. 

    Wine and Spirit Education Trust

    The first is the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET), which is a course that heavily focuses on the sciences behind winemaking.

    Court of Master Sommeliers

    The second is the Court of Master Sommeliers (CMS) which is more commonly known as they include training on service as a sommelier as well. 

    The CMS training is also the one that leads to the Master Sommelier training. It is one of the toughest tests in the world. The passing rate every year is below 10%! 

    Although certification is not a necessity in becoming a sommelier, the recognition of these institutes greatly increases your competitive value in the market. This of course will in turn increase the return value of your employment as well.

    How many sommeliers are there in the world?

    Once again, sommeliers are highly sought after in the fine-dining, travel, hospitality and wine-making industry. This makes the job title one of the hardest to attain in the world due to the difficulty in training. 

    Though we do not know for sure how many professional wine tasters are there in the world, we do know they are rare and few. 

    What is A Sommelier? Be a Wine Master! wine professional
    Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

    Imagine this: for each fine-dining restaurant that employs between ten to twenty chefs and up to thirty service staff, there is only one sommelier position. That is the demand and rarity that this position is notorious for.

    We do know however, how many Master Sommeliers are there in the world. Master sommeliers are considered the pinnacle of wine experts and to date there are less than 300 masters. 

    This goes to show how difficult it is to gain the title and recognition as a sommelier, let alone a master.

    Where do sommeliers work?

    As a sommelier’s work revolves around wine, any environment that involves the beverage will likely be suitable to a sommelier. We would add that a sommelier’s employment is mostly limited to luxury markets.

    The most common places you will find a wine professional would be in restaurants or bars, recommending wines, creating cocktails or tending to the wine cellar. Hotels, cruise ships and casino’s are also common places of employment for sommeliers where their skills will be called on to serve VIPs or to manage the purchasing and sales of wine.

    There are also professional sommeliers who teach the craft professionally as a teacher. Some sommeliers also work as expert tasters where they assist vineyards and wine makers in quality control and profiling.

    How to become a master sommelier?

    As mentioned before, a master sommelier is one of the toughest qualifications to achieve in the world. The Master title is awarded by the Court of Master Sommeliers through a 4-level program that ends with the Master Sommelier Diploma.

    To qualify for the examination and diploma, candidates will have to cover all 4 levels of training. Additional and prior work experience in the industry is highly valued as well and will give you an edge when taking the exam.

    At all four levels leading up to the master sommelier diploma, candidates are trained theoretically on wine knowledge from source to table. Candidates are also required to learn how to rope in serving customers. 

    One key skill that is required of masters, for example, is to perfectly pour a 5 ounce glass of wine without any tools.

    In the attempt to get a masters sommelier’s diploma, candidates are tested on knowledge, service abilities and also on tasting ability. 

    This portion of the examination is the toughest of them all. Candidates go through a blind test where they must identify wine down to source and age just by color, scent and taste. This is the one portion of the diploma that makes it the toughest in the world.

    A master sommelier is not the same as a wine master. Read ‘Master of Wine – Is it the same as a master sommelier?’ to learn more about the difference between the two. 


    Being a sommelier is an exciting experience, one where you get to learn new things and meet new people every single day. It is also a career that is extremely lucrative when pursued with mastery in mind, with top performing masters earning up to a quarter of a million per year. Much like any high-return career, it is also one that is extremely challenging. The work demands a high degree of dedication to both the craft and also to the service of the customer. As such, the career path of a sommelier might not be one for most to take one. This is why the Fizz Champagne & Bubbles Club is so exclusive – a personal sommelier will hand pick champagnes for members of the club! For those who choose to take on being a sommelier as a career, there is surely great fulfillment that comes with the challenges.

  • Master of Wine – Is It The Same As Master Sommelier?

    Most wine enthusiasts would be familiar with the position of the master sommelier, one of the finest positions the hospitality industry has to offer. It is a position granted by the Court of Master Sommeliers since the year 1977 but the position dates back to 1969. However, most would have missed that there is in fact another title apart from the sommelier, a specialist dedicated to wine and wine only: The Master of Wine. 

    The Master of Wine is a position and title granted to the most renowned of wine experts and has a history older than the master sommelier. The first exam took place in 1953 by the Institute of Master of Wine, making it a title with a longer history than the master sommelier.

    Let’s find out what are the differences between the two, and how do you gain these titles.

    How many Masters of Wine are there?

    As the title of Master of Wine is one of exclusivity, their numbers are sparse at best. In the span of 67 years since the founding of the institute, only 483 such titles have been granted.

    This means that each year, only about seven pass the very hard test and gain the title. Currently, there are only 409 masters of wine, living in 30 different countries across the world. 

    When placed in comparison with the master sommelier title, of which there are only 269 currently. The master sommelier definitely has a younger history and is catered to a more modernized hospitality industry.

    Difference between Master of Wine vs Master Sommelier

    Although these two titles commonly cross paths with each other and most people think they are one of the same, they are actually quite different in terms of learning pathways. 

    Despite sharing a deep passion for the same beverage, signing up as a Master of Wine or a Master Sommelier will take you down very different careers.

    master of wine
    Photo by Louis Hansel @shotsoflouis on Unsplash

    Education and certification needed

    In terms of getting access to education of both a master of wine or a sommelier, there is no “formal requirement” from the common perspective of having a degree. 

    It is however favorable to have existing experience in the wine industry. For the master sommelier title, it is also highly recommended that candidates have prior experience in the food and beverages service industry.

    Master of Wine education

    The Master of Wine course is a three-year long experience that is divided into three stages. Upon qualifying for the course, each candidate is assigned a Master of Wine as a mentor and guide. Each stage ends with a written-exam and the notoriously difficult blind taste test.

    Stage one or better known as the foundational stage is where candidates are introduced to the industry and its members. Candidates learn the ins and outs of the wine industry before being tested and qualified to stage two.

    Stage two is where candidates study viticulture or the science of wine-making. You will have the opportunity to visit vineyards to gain first hand experience on wine-making processes. 

    At the end of stage two, candidates are required to submit six written assignments prior to testing. The testing stage is divided into two – theory and practical. First is the theory segment on viticulture, the business of wine and so on. This is then followed by twelve blind tests where each wine must be identified down to the variety of grape used and its geographical origin.

    Once you pass both tests, you then proceed to stage three where you will submit a research paper. 

    The title of the paper is of your own choosing, with candidates proposing wine-related topics pertaining to wine business, popular culture and further topics. At the passing of this final study, you will be granted the title Master of Wine.

    Master of Sommelier education

    The Master Sommelier title is gained through a four-stage process. You begin your training through an introductory course which is only two days long.

    Passing this will gain you entry to the Certified Sommelier exam where you study the service of wine. A theoretical test paired with a written blind taste test of four wines will then qualify you for the next stage.

    The Advanced Sommelier certification where you will gain a deeper knowledge of wine service and business. Candidates will also learn about the wine-making process.

    To be allowed to test for the Advanced Certificate, candidates are also required to have regional working experience. At the end of the certifications, candidates will be tested via a written test, a service test and a live blind test of six wines.

    You must pass all three tests to proceed. Only once you pass the above three tests, will you finally arrive at the Master Sommelier Exam. 

    It is definitely much tougher to gain access to the Master sommelier exam compared to all previous certifications or even the Masters of Wine. Typically requiring ten years of working experience, it is also only possible to enter the exam via a recommendation. 

    The study takes on a more global approach in the wine industry and also on the business of wine as well. The final test is one of the toughest tests in the world, with an annual passing rate as low as 3%. 

    Candidates are tested through an oral theory exam, live service and blind taste before a panel, talk about pressure! This is why there are so few master sommeliers in the world. 


    When it comes to income, the experts in the wine industry are some of the most well paid in the hospitality industry. This is made even more lucrative if carry the master title. This is for the simple fact that even when combined, there are still less than a thousand masters of wine and master sommeliers in the world.

    How much do masters of wine make?

    It is not commonly known how much masters or wine make, but we do know that most are elite members of society. 

    This means that most wine masters are predominantly very well to do. Some are even owners of vineyards and take on the exam to only further their existing expertise and further earn a higher income. 

    How much do master sommeliers make?  

    Master sommeliers earn as much as 170,000USD per year. This number changes depending on the location and brand that you work for. 

    Usually, master sommeliers are headhunted by luxury hotels to improve their services. This makes remuneration packages incredibly negotiable and is more to the advantage of master sommeliers. 


    In terms of skills, both the wine master and the master sommelier are experts when it comes to wine. Through years of experience and the intensive exams, they are able to identify the origin of a wine just by taste, scent and color.

    It is a common skill for both to be able to pinpoint the exact location the grapes come from and even the year they were produced. The very pinnacle of fine and luxury palate. So where do their skills differ?

    Skills of a wine master

    A Master of Wine is a through and through specialist of wine. Masters of Wine study the beverage from grape to bottle. They understand how best to grow grapes, the climate and the soil that are needed, and the harvesting process. 

    Masters of wine have first hand knowledge and experience of producing wine as well. From planting, harvesting, macerating to bottling, they are able to understand each step and fine tune them if necessary.

    Skills of a master sommelier

    The master sommelier is an expert in serving wine. They have an all encompassing knowledge of wine and how it fits in the serving of food and the business that goes with it.

    Master sommeliers are not just required to perfectly serve wine, some are able to accurately pour the five-ounce standard by hand! 

    Master of Wine - Is It The Same As Master Sommelier? skills of master of wine
    Photo by Big Dodzy on Unsplash

    They are able to recommend the best wine to suit the food being served. Also in their skill set is the ability to work within luxury restaurants, managing the entire wine department and caring for the cellar.

    Career path of wine master vs master sommelier

    Due to the differences in skills and knowledge found between the two, you will find them working in very different careers. 

    Master sommeliers will centre their careers around hospitality, working in fine-dining environments or luxury hotels leading the wine department. 

    Masters of wine however, are likely to be more involved in the business of wine making. As a master of wine, you will work closely with vineyard owners, be involved in wine-making and also quality control.

    Despite this differentiation, it is not uncommon to find these titles outside of their common career options. As the wine industry is one that revolves around experience and reputation, it is very normal for masters to find their way into each other’s careers.


    Despite their slight difference, we can all agree that both master titles love and enjoy wine. These are experts and specialists who are the best at what they do. They are the elites of the industry whose task is to serve the top of society. With master sommeliers specializing in hospitality and service, and the Master of Wine mastering the art and knowledge wine itself. You can test out the service of a master sommelier by joining our Fizz Champagne & Bubble Club where a personal sommelier will pick out the best champagne for you.

  • Champagne Food Pairing – What Food Goes with Champagne?

    Pairing champagne with food is not an easy task. There are so many options to choose from! Plus, more often than not, champagne gets shoved aside in favour of its flatter cousins – wine. However, bubbly can and should be included in your everyday life. After all, you’re alive and able to drink champagne – that is reason enough for a celebration! 

    Did you know that champagne is actually one of the most versatile wines to pair with food because the high acidity acts as a palate cleanser. So what food goes with what type of champagne? Here is a whole list of pairings! 

    Food pairing with brut

    Brut champagne accounts a majority lot of champagne shipped out across the world. When we think of the word champagne, we are actually referring to the brut style of champagne. Test out brut champagne such as the Billecart-Salmon, Cuvée Nicolas François, 2006 Brut, the Cristal 2004, or the Charles Ellner, Grande Reserve, Brut with the following list of food and see if your taste buds are delighted.

    Citrus food

    Pairing your brut with citrusy food such as oranges or ginger is delightful on the taste buds. Citrus food such as ginger or candied oranges goes very well with champagne. 

    Fried chicken

    Yes, fried chicken is an unexpected pairing with brut. This comfort food actually gets raves from wine experts when it comes to pairing with classic champagne and there is no better way to combine ultimate class with ultimate comfort. 

    fried chicken is an unexpected pairing with brut
    Photo by Harry Dona from Pexels

    White truffle 

    Luxury on point! It does not get more luxurious than white truffle! The pungent taste of white truffle bonds with the acidity of brut which is a delight for everybody’s taste buds. 


    Although red wine is the default drink when it comes to food pairings, brut champagne can actually bring a delight to the meal instead. The texture from the bubbles and acidity cuts through the richness of the steak. In between bites of the red meat, champagne refreshes the palate. 

    steak pair with red wine
    Photo by Kasumi Loffler from Pexels

    Fried potatoes

    The crunch, salt and starch of fried potatoes brings satisfaction to the pairing with champagne. Fried potato options such as universally known french fries are awesome on the taste buds. Some people also recommended hashbrowns. Hashbrowns are crispy and buttery, which pairs perfectly with brut because the acidity prepares your palate for another bite. 

    Potato chips are also a fan favourite as the bubbles of champagne echoes the crunch of the chip which makes each bite longing for a sip. 

    Food pairings with Blanc de Blancs

    Blanc de Blancs is made entirely from white grapes, also known as Chardonnay grapes. The taste of Blanc de Blancs are usually bright with fresh acidity and are known for their dryness. This makes them a food-friendly champagne for all sort of pairings such as:-


    When it comes to champagne, one almost automatically thinks of caviar. Caviar has a natural saltiness and light oiliness which is totally opposite of the blanc de blancs. However, the brinny fish eggs compliment the champagne effortlessly and are in total harmony with each other. 

    Both caviar and champagne exhibit fine and delicate flavours which make this a great food pairing. 


    Oysters go very well with the mineral qualities of blanc de blancs. As the chardonnay grapes that make champagne are grown in soils that are rich in minerals and marine fossils, the soil adds subtle flavour notes to champagnes that are similar to those found in oysters. 

    The acidity found in blanc de blancs also enhances the flavours of raw oysters. However, do not limit yourself to just eating raw oysters with champagne. Even cooked oysters with herbs, butter and garlic pairs well with chardonnay. All the flavours compliment each other to bring delight to your mouth! 

    Oysters go very well with the mineral qualities of blanc de blancs.
    Photo by Elle Hughes from Pexels

    Macaroni and cheese

    Comfort food like macaroni and cheese goes well with blanc de blancs as a food pairing because the champagnes cut through the richness of all the cream and cheese. 

    Light fish 

    Light fish such as snappers are a classic pairing for the bright flavours of champagne. The subtle flavours of fish are underscored by the bubbly’s crisp acidity and has a lifting effect. 

    Even baked or poached, the fish pairs well with blanc de blancs as a champagne food pairing.

    Creamy soup

    Bubbly goes well with creamy soup such as creamy mushroom soup. You can prepare a dinner in which creamy soup is an appetizer followed by the oysters and light fish, as recommended above.

    Food pairing with Rosé

    Rosé champagne is a standout amongst its counterparts. Rosé champagne balances the acidity and rich berry flavours to just about anything you bring to the table. 

    Rosé is actually one of the most versatile, food-friendly sparkling wines in the world as the depth of flavour combined with the acidity allows it to be paired with different dishes. You can try a bottle of rosé such as RuinartRosé.

    We recommend that you drink rosé anytime and anywhere. However, you can pair it best with the following food as it brings out a remarkable flavour:-


    While rosé pairs beautifully with all kinds of game meat and poultry, duck is a particular standout. The rosé showcases bright red cherry, rhubarb and mushroom notes that complement the duck breast meat. The acidity on the other hand, cuts through the fattiness of the duck. Absolutely delicious! 

    rosé pairs beautifully with duck meat
    Photo by Sebastian Coman Photography from Pexels


    Although pizza is usually eaten with beer, you should try it with rosé one day! The acid and red berry fruit go well with tomatoes and the creaminess, fat and protein of the mozzarella make it a home favourite. 

    Spicy Food

    Rosé champagne offers a pleasing contrast to spicy food such as hot chilis, curry or even kimchi (Korean spicy fermented vegetables)! The bubbles in rosé are very refreshing and you will keep going back for more spicy foods. 

    Meaty fish 

    Although light fish favours blanc de blancs as mentioned above, heartier and more meaty fish recipes complements rosé. It is an ideal food pairing as the champagne brings the right blend of tart and fruity flavours to the plate. 

    Crab cakes

    Crab, when breaded and fried in the form of crab cakes get a boost from rosé. The sweetness of the berries and the acidity of lemon is the perfect complement to crab cakes. The champagne food pairing highlights the natural flavours of the sea that comes from the crab meat. 

    Cured meats and fish 

    The fruity flavours of rosé bring balance to cured meats and fish. It brings a balance for the salty, smoky and spicy tastes of your favourite meats. Rosé is delicious with these heartier meals and cuts the richness of fatty meat. 

    The same goes for cured fish such as smoked salmon. This food pairing with rosé champagne strikes a perfect balance between richness and vibrancy as it has acidity but it has a depth of flavour. 

    Food pairings with sweet champagne (demi-sec)

    Decidedly sweeter than brut, sweet champagne, also known as demi-sec is a perfect compliment to dessert and cheese! However, that’s not all it goes well with. Sweet champagne also goes well with:


    Instead of soda, try sweet champagne instead. The residual sweetness of demi-sec matches very nicely with the buttered popcorn and brings an extra luxurious taste to your mouth. 


    Charred octopus is slightly savoury, which is offset by a sweeter champagne. Thanks to its sweetness, this unexpected pairing has introduced itself as a pleasant surprise for many, 

    Food pairings with dry champagne (dosage / brut nature)

    Dry champagne, also known as dosage  or brut nature has less sugar than brut and is drier in quality. It has an acidic freshness that pairs really well with savory food. 

    You can read more about the different levels of brut and champagne sweetness here. 

    Food pairings that goes well with this type of champagne include:


    Lobster has a natural, understated sweetness. Dry champagne paired with lobster give the foodie a refreshing punch due to a process known as late disgorgement, of which the yeast are removed later in the production process, giving the champagne less time to oxidise. THis in turn, gives a more bracing finish to the champagne. 

    lobster to pair with champagne
    Photo by ROMAN ODINTSOV from Pexels

    Roast chicken

    Roast chicken, or Rotisserie chicken is a classic French dish. Makes sense that it pairs well with champagne that originates from France. 

    The earthy and savory flavours is complemented by the crisp dryness of a dosage. This pairing also works well with any buttery and crispy-skinned bird from the oven.


    Pair your champagnes with food like an expert! Champagne is such a versatile drink and the different pairings allow for multiple combinations and maximum enjoyment. There is definitely a type of champagne that goes with just about any food that makes it to your table. Be adventurous! You never know what food you will discover goes wonderfully with your champagne. Do you have a favourite food pairing? Why not try something new as suggested above and open your palate for a richer experience.

  • Scientific Reasons Why Champagne is Good For You – Drink Bubbly Without Guilt!

    You have likely heard that champagne is a great drink. You see it drunk at birthday parties and weddings and celebrations. But is the bubbly really good for you, health wise or has it always been just hearsay? 

    Let us assure you that science has proven that champagne is good for you. So the next time you pop the champagne cork at breakfast (yes, people do that), you need not feel guilty at all and can actually claim that it is for your health. 

    champagne for memory boost
    Photo by Ksenia Chernaya from Pexels

    Let’s dive in on the scientific reasons why champagne is good for you.

    Champagne will give your memory a boost

    Champagne contains proteins that are beneficial for your memory. A team of researchers from the University of Reading previously conducted a study that determined up to three glasses of Champagne per week can boost brain health

    As memory is one of the primary cognitive functions in humans, the study wanted to prove that there would be a positive impact if champagne is consumed in moderation. 

    So the study was performed on rats over a period of six weeks. Rats were given a dose of champagne every day and were made to complete a maze. A success rate of 70 percent was celebrated when rats drank the champagne on a regular basis. The same rats only had a 50 percent success rate without the champagne! 

    People have also claimed that champagne helps to fight memory loss diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s although it has not yet been proven. 

    Well you do not have anything to lose if a glass or two (scientists declare that three glasses is best) a week helps to delay the onset of memory loss in the brain. So drink away! 

    Champagne is low in calories 

    If you desire to lose weight, calorie intake is pretty important in that process. Yet some may find it rather difficult to give up their glasses of wine altogether. Fret not! A glass of champagne contains fewer calories than a glass of red or white wine. 

    A glass of red or white wine can contain up to 200 calories whereas a glass of champagne only has about 80 to 95 calories. 

    Scientific Reasons Why Champagne is Good For You - Drink Bubbly Without Guilt! champagne is low colories
    Photo by GEORGE DESIPRIS from Pexels

    You can even find low dosage champagne that only has an average of 65 calories in a glass. 

    A bottle of Billecart-Salmon, Cuvée Nicolas François, 2006, Brut, is lower in calories as it contains less sugar. This is such a good option and you can enjoy it, guilt-free! You can also select your champagne according to the 7 levels of brut so that you can choose even lower calorie bubbly.

    Champagne protects your brain 

    Three phenolic acids from champagne called tyrosol, caffeic acid and gallic acid protect your brain from damage from free radicals. 

    Champagne increases your sex drive 

    Alcohol generally makes you lose your inhibitions and gives you an extra buzz. Couples usually then experience a drop in energy and a side effect of alcohol leaves a lack of blood flow for arousal. 

    The champagne bubbles however, allows you to feel the effects of alcohol much quicker without sapping your energy. This is due to the magnesium, potassium and zinc that champagne contains. 

    The bubbles also go to your head at a much faster rate as compared to other wines and alcohol. Research has shown that people who drank champagne had a higher level of alcohol in their blood after 20 minutes than those who consumed flat sparkling wine. 

    Due to the carbonation which ‘rushes’ the alcohol from the stomach to the small intestine, you will feel the effects of alcohol much quicker. Therefore, the extra buzz leads most people to have a higher sex drive. 

    So the next time you are celebrating an anniversary with your partner, drink the bubbly and make it an unforgettable night! 

    Champagne improves your heart health

    We all know that wine actually improves your heart health but did you know that champagne actually shares the same benefits? 

    Why not? Champagne is basically made from both red and white wine grapes. It is just that the three main champagne grapes are planted, harvested and bottled in the northeastern region of France named Champagne. 

    Studies have shown that ‘two glasses of champagne a day may be good for your heart and circulation and could reduce your risk of suffering from cardiovascular disease and stroke.’

    Red and white wine grapes contain antioxidants that prevent damage to the blood vessels. Wine grapes also prevent blood clots and reduce bad cholesterol in your body. Both of these benefits actually reduces your risk of developing heart diseases and strokes. 

    However, do not go overboard. Drink in moderation. 

    For champagne lovers, champagne not only holds a place in your heart, it also helps your heart and for the broken hearted, well either way, champagne will heal your heart.

    Champagne lowers your risk of diabetes

    Champagne lowers the risk of diabetes by 13 percent! Wow! 

    If you have a history of diabetes in the family, it might be time to drink bubbly on a more regular basis. Actually, all wines will reduce the risk of acquiring type 2 diabetes but we prefer some bubbles in our wine. 

    Champagne helps with digestion

    A study done actually found that fermented alcoholic drinks, such as the bubbly you drink, can increase gastric acid by as much as 95 percent. 

    Low stomach acids can cause many digestive problems such as nausea, acid reflux, gastritis, general discomfort and more. The increase in gastric acid actually helps your body to digest food better. 

    Champagne is good for your skin 

    Give your skin a good boost with champagne as the antioxidants found in wine grapes gives your countenance a lift. 

    Scientific Reasons Why Champagne is Good For You - Drink Bubbly Without Guilt! Champagne is good for your skin
    Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

    Dermatologists love wine grapes. There are antioxidant properties in wine grapes that help with skin. Champagne also contains a lightening tartaric acid that reduces pigmentation, therefore creating an even skin tone. 

    Plus, champagne has antibacterial properties which helps to fight skin breakouts and reduce acne. 

    Champagne is also a good source of polyphenol, which is known to combat skin redness. The bubbly you drink has carbon dioxide properties that creates a skin tightening effect, therefore reducing wrinkles and loose skin.

    Some dermatologists have also recommended dipping a cotton ball into a bit of champagne and directly applying it topically to your face and throat. Sounds crazy? Why not test it out and tell us if it helped your skin? There is no harm in trying out this method. 

    Others also recommend that you add a bottle of champagne to your bubble bath as the carbon dioxide in champagne will act as a gentle exfoliator whilst soothing dry skin. The acidity found in champagne will also leave your skin soft and supple to the touch.

    If that sounds too weird to you, it does not change the fact that there are so many benefits of champagne for your skin. So is it not worth drinking a glass or two every day? 

    Start by trying a bottle of the vintage Cristal 2004. You will likely be a champagne convert after tasting it for the first time if this is your first bottle of champagne! 

    Champagne gives you shiny hair

    Although this is an unconventional use of champagne, did you know that rinsing your hair with a bottle of champagne will add volume to your locks? The next time you wash your hair, use a bottle of champagne instead of the typical hair products. 

    If you have blond or light coloured hair, it is a bonus because a champagne hair wash will help to bright out the shine in hair due to the golden colour of champagne. 

    Champagne boosts your mood

    Besides being a nice treat for yourself, champagne also contains mood-boosting benefits! For your mental health, you can drink a glass or two of champagne as the sources of zinc, potassium and magnesium help to lift your mood if you’ve had a bad day.

    All the more reason to enjoy a glass of champagne without taking into account whether you have had a bad day or not. 

    To give your mood a further boost, pair your champagne with a good source of protein such as a salmon or mackerel dish. The pairing of champagne plus a fish dish which is rich in omega-3 will increase your happiness.

    Not only does it taste good, the scientific benefit for your mental health is worth a glass! 

    Wrap Up

    Experts really believe that drinking champagne actually brings multiple benefits to your physical and mental health. However, this only works if you drink in moderation. Science has proven the benefits of bubbly so you need not worry about the advantages of being a myth. The next time you raise a toast, celebrate not just the occasion or couple, remember you are also toasting your health. Drink up! 

  • Types of Champagne – Jargon on Champagne Labels Explained!

    Walk into a liquor store or a wine shop and you will probably be faced with hundreds, if not thousands of choices for hard liquor, wine, sparkling wine and champagne. It is definitely not easy to choose a single bottle of wine to drink. If you do not want to go wrong, the first thing you can do is pick champagne as your choice of drink. But there are so many different types of champagne! How do you even start on choosing a single bottle from the different types? 

    Read on to find out all the different types of champagne, explain the jargon surrounding this bubbly and ultimately help you pick the best champagne you should select! Whatever your preference – dry, creamy, toasty, sweet – you will be able to find a champagne that suits your palate perfectly! 

    Ways to Categorize Champagne

    First off, sparkling wine is not champagne. What is champagne then? 

    Well, the wine you drink can only be called champagne if the bubbly is made in the northeastern region of France called Champagne. There is a common saying, ‘All champagne is sparkling wine but not all sparkling wine is champagne’. This basically sums it up. 

    champagne in the bucket

    There are several different ways to differentiate the type of champagne. As you have likely observed, all the jargon on the bottle of a label is hard to understand if you are not a seasoned bubbly drinker. 

    To categorize champagne, you can go according to champagne brands, sweet champagne types, champagne vineyards, champagne styles, ways of aging and classification of champagne.

    All the above makes a difference in terms of identifying the type of champagne you would want to buy.

    Sweetness Level of Champagne

    The first way to differentiate the types of champagne is by its sweetness level. Sugar that is added to champagne is called Dosage. It is added right before the cork is inserted into the bottle. You may also come across the term brut, this is the French word for dry

    So what is brut champagne? Brut champagne is effectively the level of sweetness in the champagne. There are seven levels altogether – from doux (sweet) to brut nature (bone dry).

    The seven types – brut nature, extra brut, brut, extra dry, dry, demi-sec and doux – is usually found on the label of the champagne bottle so if you absolutely love sweet bubbly, go for doux champagne!

    The amount of sugar added to the champagne determines the level of brut. As each person has different preferences when it comes to sweetness, producers produce various types of brut levels to meet market demands. 

    Style of Champagne

    There are 3 main champagne grapes that are used to make bubbly – Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. There are others but these 3 primary grapes account for 99.7 percent of champagne grapes. 

    It is how these grapes are used that give you a hint of what type of style or type of champagne you are about to taste. 


    If the style of champagne is not stated on the bottle, just assume that the producer has blended all three grapes together in a white sparkling wine. 

    The three main styles of champagne are:

    1. Blanc de Blancs 

    Made with 100% Chardonnay grapes. This is a white style of champagne. 

    1. Blanc de Noirs 

    This is made with 100% black grapes. A combination of Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier usually makes up this bubbly.

    1. Rosé

    Rosé champagne is usually made with a blend of white and red Pinot Noir or Pinot Meunier. 

    Rose Champagne
    Photo by Alex George on Unsplash

    Aging of Champagne

    This is actually one of the most important factors when it comes to choosing the type of champagne. The fact that how long the bottle of bubbly is aged and how it is aged affects the taste and flavour of the champagne. 

    Champagne is further categorised into two parts when it comes to aging – vintage champagne and non-vintage champagne. 

    Vintage champagne is aged for a minimum of three years, though most are aged longer than that. Non-vintage champagne, on the other hand, is aged for a minimum of only 15 months. 

    When it comes to aging champagne on tirage (on the lees), the aging gives the flavour more toasty, bready and nutty notes, all of which are a sign of a great champagne. 

    Iconic brands of champagne such as Moët & Chandon will age their bottles on tirage even longer than the required years. This is why they are one of the best brands as the flavour produced is one of the nuttiest sparkling wines in the world! 


    You may also figure out the type of champagne through the commune name. This signifies where the grapes used to make the champagne are grown. 

    Across the Champagne region, there are hundreds of communes. However, there are only two types that produce exemplary quality wine grapes which in turn, will make high-quality champagnes. 

    The first is the Premier Cru vineyards. Out of the hundreds of communes, there are only 42 Premier Cru vineyards. 

    The second is the Grand Cru vineyards. Even more exclusive, there are only 17 Grand Cru vineyards among the hundreds. 

    Of course, there are other crus that are just as good but if you spot on the label Premier Cru or Grand Cru, you are pretty much guaranteed a really good bottle of champagne for your celebrations. 

    Producer Classification 

    The name of the champagne producer is also noted on the bottles’ labels. There are three main types of producers – Maisons, Cooperatives and Vignerons. 


    This basically means the big guys. The big champagne houses like Bollinger, Veuve Clicquot, Perrier, Moët and so on are called Maisons. 

    The grapes they use are from all over the region of Champagne. 

    The Maisons are further broken down into three categories, which are: 

    Négociant Manipulant (NM)

    This means that the producer buys all or some of the grapes used from other growers. Anything less than 94% estate fruit, by law, must be labeled as Négociant Manipulant. 

    Marque d’Acheteur (MA) 

    This also means ‘buyer’s own brand’. Large retailers or restaurants that buy finished wine and sell it under their own private label is probably MA. 

    Négociant Distributeur (ND)

    This refers to a buyer that labels and distributes bubbly that they neither grew nor produced. 


    Cooperatives refer to the medium guys. They are located in specific villages and make their champagne from multiple different growers. 


    These are grower producers or are owned by a single family or individual who grows grapes by himself in a specific place and makes his own bubbly. 

    Further broken down are three terms again:-

    Récoltant Manipulant” (RM) 

    This refers to a grower-producer who uses a minimum of 95% estate fruit. This is the classic grower-producer type though a Maison sometimes uses this classification on a sub-label. 

    Société de Récoltants (SR) 

    SR is a group of growers who share resources and market their own brands as a team

    Récoltant Coopérateur”  (RC) 

    RC is a grower-producer who has their own brand of champagne but made at a co-op facility.

    Where the Grapes are Grown

    There are five main growing regions of grapes in Champagne. Where the wine grapes are grown makes a difference as each of the regions have different distinct qualities. 

    The five main regions are: 

    Montagne de Reims

    Pinot Noir is the grape of choice in this region. Where this is located, on a hill south of Reims that has vineyards facing south or southeast, allows the grapes to achieve optimal ripeness before harvest. 

    This area contains ten of the 17 Grand Cru vineyards as stated above! 

    Krug uses grapes from Montagne de Reims and the flavours are bigger and richer than your average grapes 

    meunier grapes

    Vallée de la Marne

    Only one of the Grand Cru vineyards is found in the Vallée de la Marne. The main focus of this region is the Pinot Meunier grape as the cooler weather allows the grapes to easily ripen. The grapes produced here has more smoky flavours

    Côte des Blancs

    Primarily planted with Chardonnay, the slope the grapes are planted on faces east and has lots of sun. This region contains the remaining 6 Grand Cru vineyards. Some of the finest Blanc de Blancs are produced from the grapes of this region. 

    Côte de Sézanne

    Similar to Côte des Blancs, Côte de Sézanne produces Chardonnay as well but the grapes are usually blended by larger Maisons. 

    Côte des Bar

    Mostly planted with Pinot Noir, it is somewhat similar to Montagne de Reims. This area however, is relatively new when it comes to producing champagne grapes. The newest however, does not mean that the quality is bad. It just means that you may find hidden gems of great value grapes! 


    All the factors when it comes to types of champagne can cross over with each other. For example, the Billecart-Salmon Cuvée Nicolas François, 2006, Brut. It is brut, the grapes are from a blend of 60% Pinot Noir Montagne de Reims and 40% Chardonnay from Côte des Blancs. Just read the label for you to find the types of champagnes and all the information. So there you have it, you should be able to understand the labels on champagne bottles now without getting a panic attack over the champagne jargon. Happy shopping and happy drinking!  

  • Vintage Champagne – A Whole Other World of Bubbly

    Vintage champagne has been described as “wine that is supposed to make you happy” by Moët Hennessy ambassador Lucy Warren. During times of celebration, champagne is brought out and the bubbly will elicit smiles all around with the clink of glasses heard all around. Vintage champagne is needed, in our opinion, all the time! 

    Vintage Champagne - A Whole Other World of Bubbly moet
    Photo by Fotograf Jylland from Pexels

    Here is why! Today, you will be reading all about vintage champagne. And no, this is not a rather dry (see what we did there?) topic. If you are interested in bubbly, this is where you start. 

    What is Vintage Champagne? 

    All champagne can only be considered champagne if they are produced in the northeastern region of France called Champagne (note the capital C). However, even if they come from the same region, champagne can vary significantly. 

    The majority of champagne is considered non vintage. Vintage champagne, also known as millésimé, is made exclusively with the produce of a single harvest. This means that the labelling on the bottles will likely show a year. 

    When the harvest is of outstanding quality during certain years, vintage champagne is produced. At times, vintage champagne production is infrequent due to weather conditions.

    Popular brands that produce vintage champagne include Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Neunier. It all has to be from a single year though, for it to be considered vintage. 

    What Affects the Production of Vintage Champagne?

    There are a few factors that go into the production of vintage champagne that, if not done correctly, will result in the non-production of vintage bubbly. 

    1. Weather 

    Champagne, the region, is one of the northernmost wine regions in the world. This means that the weather constantly changes and is subject to all kinds of winds. It may be  cold one day and hail may drop the next. 

    Vintage Champagne - A Whole Other World of Bubbly good weather for grapes
    Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

    Overall, it is freezing over in Champagne. 

    This will affect the production of grapes. At times, the grapes are not ripe enough and other years, the grapes would be overripe. 

    Nowadays, with technology, champagne producers have started to grow grapes in a controlled environment. This is great for vintage champagnes as producers are able to produce more bottles. However, not all producers have applied this technology yet so it is not very popular. 

    1. Scarcity and Quality

    The scarcity and quality of harvested grapes in the same season are key determinants for vintage champagne production. 

    In theory, vintage champagnes are only made in particularly good years. The bubbly has to be made from the best grapes from superior vineyards only. 

    Why Is Vintage Champagne so Expensive? 

    Vintage champagne, by law, has to be aged a minimum of four years. This is what makes vintage cost a lot more at times. 

    Also, the word “vintage” brings to mind “old and expensive” or maybe “treasured”. It can be really interesting to collect vintage champagne and may bring wine collectors great pleasure.

    Vintage Champagne - A Whole Other World of Bubbly vintage champagne

    There is a reason that makes sense why vintage champagne is more expensive – there is simply less of it. Champagne producers have less to play around with to produce a flavourful bottle and therefore, it will cost more.   

    How Much Should You Pay for Vintage Champagne?

    It really is up to you. Ask yourself if you really want or need a bottle of vintage champagne and if the answer is yes, the sky’s the limit in terms of price. 

    The older the bottle, the more you can expect to pay. 

    An increase of 20 to 30 percent for a relatively new vintage bottle is fairly common. 

    Is Vintage Champagne an Investment Opportunity? 

    Vintage champagne offers first time investors a lower entry point as it is fairly affordable, especially when compared with other wines like Burgundy or Bordeaux. 

    For seasoned investors, an investment in vintage champagne can diversify portfolios. 

    Vintage bubbly will increase in value when the year the bottle is made becomes scarce. 

    Globally, the top champagne vintages, which include the years 1988, 1996 and 2002, showed consistent appreciation and steady growth over the years. Over a two year period up to August 2014, these bottles rose 10.2% in value. 

    Say what you will about wine collectors, vintage champagne may likely be a great investment opportunity!

    What is the Difference Between Vintage vs Non-Vintage Champagne

    Every year, around 80 to 90 percent of bubbly is produced that is non-vintage. People do get rather confused while browsing a liquor store about champagne, non-vintage champagne and vintage champagne.

    Look out for the following differences if you want to look like an expert and know the difference between vintage versus non-vintage champagne:-

    Label on Bottle

    The year of harvest will always appear on a bottle of vintage champagne. Non-vintage champagne does not have a year as it is made from a mixture of harvested grapes.


    Non-vintage champagnes are wines that are made from grapes harvested from a number of years. Up to 90 percent of champagne is non-vintage. The mixture can be a comfortable blend or one that represents a house’s specific style. 

    Vintage champagne is a blend that reflects the year instead. You never know what you will get and only superior grapes from the harvest are produced into a type of vintage champagne. 

    Aging Time

    Non-vintage champagnes are aged in a producer’s cellars for a minimum of 15 months only. Of course, there are variants to it but that is the general rule. 

    Vintage champagnes, however, are aged for at least three to four years although most will be left for longer. 

    Vintage Champagne - A Whole Other World of Bubbly Duval Leroy
    Duval-Leroy, Femme de Champagne, 1996

    Storage Time

    Vintage champagnes can be kept up to 10 years. Non-vintage champagne can be drunk immediately, right off the shelf. 

    You can likely store non-vintage champagne up to a year but it has to be stored in a place where there is no light and no heat or your bubbly will deteriorate and end up flat. 


    Vintage champagne is celebrated for its uniqueness. 

    Non vintage champagne is valued for its familiarity, which often highlights a brand or label’s flagship tastes and aromas. Each vineyard and champagne producer has its in-house style. Some iconic brands such as Pinot Noir highlights a taste that is richer and bolder. 

    Others, such as Taittinger, who specializes in Chardonnay grapes, have a taste that is more elegant. 

    Misconceptions about Vintage Champagne

    There are, as always, a few misconceptions when it comes to vintage champagne. Among them are:


    This is a very common misconception. People often think that vintage champagne is of higher quality than non vintage champagne. 

    We would like to point out that taste is a matter of preference. Although more work goes into producing a vintage champagne, the taste of vintage champagne on the palate is more complex but does not mean that it is better than non-vintage champagne. 

    Ideally, you should try a vintage and a non-vintage champagne side by side in order to see the real differences and how each house or producers’s style comes across in each glass.


    No, you are not encouraged to keep champagne forever, even if they are vintage. The flavour, taste and aroma of champagne will change as they age and it will become deeper and lose some of its bubbly. 

    Vintage bubbly can be kept for five to ten years only before it starts changing but maybe for the better. It is best to keep in mind that each individual bottle can be kept for a different amount of time. 

    Vintage Year

    It is untrue that the majority of producers have to agree before a year is named a “vintage year”. 

    In fact, according to Thibaut Le Mailloux, the Comité Interprofessionel du Vin de Champagne (CIVC), the governing body of the region, explained that every champagne producer can decide to create a vintage wine depending on its harvest, strategy or desire to do so.

    It is entirely dependent on each individual producer, individually. 

    The Best Vintage Champagne

    While any year can potentially be a vintage year in producing champagne. However, in recent history, there have been two or three years in each decade that stood out and were deemed worth of vintage bottling. 

    The year 2002 and 2008 were such years. 

    In 2002, the quality of the vintage was deemed “exceptional” by many and seemed to have given remarkable pleasure to those who drank the bubbly from this year. 

    Vintage Champagne

    In 2008, the vintage wines produced offered more acidity and greater aging potential. The Doyard, Blanc de Blancs 2008, Grand Cru, Brut is one such example of a vintage chardonnay blend from this year. 

    There are, of course, other great years or maybe the producer decided to bottle or two of vintage. You can try the Duval-Leroy, Femme de Champagne 1996 or the  Gosset, Celebris, 2004, Extra Brut as an entry into the vintage champagne world.  


    There are many differences between vintage and non-vintage champagne. Vintage champagne opens a whole different world of bubbly for you. Either way, whether you are

  • How Long Does Champagne Last? Keep the Bubbles in Your Bubbly!

    There’s nothing as elegant as serving a glass of perfectly chilled champagne. However, sometimes all you want to do is taste the champagne or have a glass with a few dishes. You do not have to drink the entire bottle! 

    Yes, you can store champagne and today we will tell you how to do it best so that your champagne does not go to waste and still tastes delicious! 

    How Long Does Champagne Last? 

    Your bottle of champagne has a shelf life of about 3 to 5 days once it is opened. After this period of time, most bottles will lose their bubbly and taste rather flat. When the champagne is flat, it means that all the flavours in the bottle have evaporated which means it is likely you will not enjoy your champagne anymore. 

    How Long Does Champagne Last? Keep the Bubbles in Your Bubbly! wine glass
    Image by Terri Cnudde from Pixabay

    There are certain sparkling wines that do not last as long as traditional sparkling wines such as champagne and cava. Prosecco and moscato are among these categories. You should drink Prosecco and moscato as soon as possible and definitely within the three days of first popping the cork. 

    If however, your bottle of champagne is unopened, there are certain ways to store it in order to extend its shelf life. Read on because we’ll talk about that. 

    First, we have to find out… 

    How to Keep The Bubbles in Champagne? 

    Keeping the fizz in champagne is so essential in order for your bottle of champagne to not go flat. 

    The best tips for you when it comes to keeping a bottle of champagne fresh and bubbly is to..

    1.  Pop a champagne stopper into the bottle. 

    If you do not plan on finishing your bottle of champagne, have a champagne stopper on hand. 

    Champagne stoppers are airtight which means that the gas is unable to escape the wine. 

    Once you have poured the amount of champagne into a glass – whether it is a flute or tulip shaped glass – immediately clamp a stopper onto the bottle. Even between refilling your glass, you can do that. It is not limited to when you do not finish the bottle of champagne.

    1. Stuff a cork into the bottle

    If you don’t have a champagne stopper on hand, you can stuff a regular wine cork into your champagne bottle. 

    The aim is to keep oxygen out and the champagne bubbles in! At the very least, stuffing a wine cork into the bottle of champagne will help.

    1. Wrap with cling wrap

    If both champagne stopper and wine corks are not available, just use cling wrap and secure it with a rubber band. 

    Remember, the purpose is to keep the fizz in champagne. 

    It does not matter which of the above methods you use, as long as you cover the bottle as tightly as possible. Although some people have sworn and said that the spoon-in-the-bottle trick works, it does not! Cover your bottles! 

    The spoon-in-the-bottle trick is when people put a teaspoon, handle downwards, into the champagne bottle’s mouth. The origins of this tactic is uncertain but research has shown that there was no effect in the preservation of carbonation and effervescence

    1. Store in the fridge

    This is essential! Any of the three methods mentioned above will work only if you store your bubbly in the fridge. Not the freezer. 

    The science behind is that the colder the champagne, the slower it releases the carbon dioxide or CO2, which keeps the bubbles right in your sparkling wine! 

    How to Store Champagne?

    You have to store champagne correctly so that the quality is not affected. It is likely that you have a few bottles of champagne to be enjoyed at home so a cellar is out of the question unless you’re staying in an old period house. 

    So how do you do it? Here a few pointers so that your champagne’s quality is not affected. 

    1. Lay bottles horizontally

    For the short term of up to a month, bottles can be stored standing up. It is more practical this way. 

    However, for long term storage, it is best that bottles of champagne should be laid down horizontally. You can use a wine rack or stacked in a way a cellar stacks bottles. 

    If it is kept standing for too long, there is a risk of the cork drying out. 

    How Long Does Champagne Last? Keep the Bubbles in Your Bubbly! store your champagne
    Photo by Florent B. from Pexels
    1. Keep bottles away from bright light 

    It is essential to keep champagne away from bright and artificial light. Try to keep them away from vibrations as well. 

    Although your home does not have a cellar, we try to emulate a cellar’s settings and wine cellars are kept dark for a reason, which is to maintain the quality of champagne and wine. 

    1. Consistent temperature

    The ideal temperature for storage of champagne bottles is at 10°C to 13°C. However, what is more important is the consistency of temperature storage instead. 

    If temperature fluctuates a lot, it will kill the champagne or sparkling wine. Places like the kitchen, garage or sheds should not be a storage place for champagnes as these locations have temperatures that are ever changing. 

    1. Do not store forever

    Before being sold, champagnes are already aged properly. Therefore, it is not necessary to store it for a long time. 

    Generally, non-vintage champagnes can be kept unopened for three to four years. Vintage champagnes on the other hand, can be stored anywhere between five to ten years. 

    Usually, champagnes will lose their bubbles as they age and over time, the flavours will mature. This will change the taste and aroma of the champagne. As they age, champagne will also become a deeper, golden colour. 

    How Do You Know if Your Champagne is Bad? 

    Unfortunately, champagne can go bad and spoil. 

    When champagne has gone bad, the taste of it will be flat and the aroma will have faded. Instead, the smell of vinegar will be very strong. 

    Generally, bad champagne tastes sour and quite unpleasant. Although you can use it for cooking, it is likely you will be turned off by it and avoid using it for any dish at this point. 

    To avoid having your champagne turn bad, you can use the methods as mentioned above and invest in a proper champagne stopper. 

    Another option would be to finish everything! Save your bottles of champagne for when you have company or when you are really celebrating an occasion. 

    How to best serve champagne?

    There are a few things to keep in mind when serving champagne, whether it is half a bottle or an unopened bottle in order to ensure the quality of the bubbly remains. 

    Chill champagne

    Champagne needs to be chilled. Optimum serving temperature for champagne is between 8°C to 10°C. 

    You can chill the bottle in your fridge for about three hours before serving or leave it in a bucket of ice and water for 30 minutes. 

    However, never put your champagne in the freezer as this will kill its bubbles and before you know it, your champagne has gone flat! 

    Be careful when opening champagne

    There is about five to six atmospheric pressure within a bottle of champagne. This means that it can pop a cork out at 50mph. Yes, people have actually died from a flying cork. Be careful! 

    To open a bottle of champagne, hold the bottle away from you at a 45 degree angle. Place the cork in the palm of your hand whilst holding the base and twist the bottle slowly. You will feel the cork loosen eventually. 

    If the cork refuses to move, run the neck of the bottle over some warm water for a few seconds. That should do the trick. 

    There is nothing more noteworthy than a person being able to open a bottle of champagne properly! 

    Do not make it pop

    Champagne should be opened with a hiss rather than a loud pop! In a restaurant or when you are dining outside your home, other guests should not be disturbed by the popping sound of a champagne bottle. 

    Indeed, you have to have great control to open the bottle slowly but it is better etiquette to do so. 

    Of course, there are circumstances in which the pop, fizz, clink is considered important. When celebrating an occasion, the pop certainly adds a warm atmosphere and gives the party a sense of festivity. So if you have an occasion to celebrate, pop away! 

    Serve it in a glass 

    The ideal glass to serve champagne in is actually a tulip shaped glass! This is the best way to keep bubbles in. 

    The width of the champagne coupe, which is said to be modelled after Marie Anoinette’s breast, is more popular but the bubble and aromas of your bubbly are quickly lost into the air if this glass is used. It will not last as long. 

    How Long Does Champagne Last? Keep the Bubbles in Your Bubbly! Keep the bubbles in champagne
    Photo by Wendy Wei from Pexels


    Champagne is such an exquisite drink and you definitely do not want to waste even a drop of it, so purchase only the best affordable champagne! It is advisable to store it properly if you are storing it for a longer period of time or if it is drunk halfway to ensure the quality of your bubbly is intact. Serve champagne properly, in the right way and enjoy its light, delicate and complex nature of it! 

  • Rose Champagne – Pretty in Pink

    Champagne is synonymous to celebration and parties of good tidings. Having attended any such occasions, you would likely have been offered a taste of this classy and golden beverage. For those with a few more encounters with champagne, you may have chanced upon what is called Rose Champagne, also known as pink champagne.

    Rose Champagne - Pretty in Pink rose champagne 1
    Photo by Daria Shevtsova from Pexels

    Typically, champagne comes in various tinges of yellowish-orange depending on its source. Rose Champagne however, is a standout amongst its counterparts by carrying an added hue of pink. This is the reason some call it pink champagne instead. 

    What is rose champagne?

    Outside of the color difference, what is rose champagne and what makes it so different from your regular champagne? What are the differences when it comes to Rose vs Champagne.

    To really make the best out of this question, we have to give you a basic understanding of what champagne is. Champagne is basically sparkling wine that is made in France using grapes grown in the Champagne region. The Champagne region (note the capital C) is based in the northeastern part of France. 

    The exclusivity of champagne is due to the fact that there are laws that govern their production. It is illegal for anyone to label any product “Champagne” unless it came from that region. You can read this article for a more in depth explanation about what champagne is all about.

    The process of making champagne is also highly regulated, making its reputation that much more luxurious. At this point, you should note that we are still only talking about regular champagne. 

    Rose Champagne comprises only about 5% of champagne produced annually. The key difference is really in the addition of red grapes added to the mix when making this sparkling wine.

    This added tint of pink, or red grapes, elevates an already head-turning drink to something of higher exclusivity. 

    Rose Champagne however, isn’t just exclusive and unique in its visual parts. This pink equivalent of champagne is higher in value and rarity as well.

    The additional ingredient needed to create this pink hue in rose champagne also inserts a new layer of complexity in taste. It is truly a drink fit for the highest of joyful celebrations.

    Some even consider Rose Champagne the best champagne in the world.

    There are two methods when it comes to how pink sparkling wine is made. The first is Blending or “Rose d’assemblage” and the second is Macerated or “Rose de Saignee”.

    To further explain these two methods:-

    Rose d’assemblage

    The blending process is where red wine is added to sparkling white wine. The two different types of grapes are fermented separately and then mixed in together once the process is complete. 

    Typically, Rose champagne consists of 15% red wine, with the rest being white. This however is not universal and is up to each maker’s preference in taste and color.

    Rose Champagne - Pretty in Pink Rose dassemblage
    Photo by Andreea Ch from Pexels

    Rose de Saignee

    In the maceration method, the white wine, while being fermented, comes into contact with red grape skin for a short period of time. This contact between the two then results in the pinkish hue that Rose champagne is known for.

    It is good to note that neither methods are wrong as both are practiced and accepted legally. The blending method however, is the more common method adopted by most Rose Champagne makers.

    What does rose champagne taste like?

    The taste profile of Rose Champagne is definitely unique and different from your regular glass of champagne. Like any food and beverage, any added ingredient will surely result in added complexity in taste and flavor.

    Your everyday glass of champagne is usually crisp and dry. The added red grapes into the mix will naturally add a deeper, robust and fruity aroma and taste. This can take its reference from red wine which carries a similar taste profile.

    However, every brand of Pink Champagne is produced with varying consistencies unique to the house producing them.

    The well known Moet & Chandon rose for example has a richer taste of strawberry and raspberry that’s firm and flowery. The iconic Dom Perignon Rose is a warm and full fruity vanilla rose. 

    There are also rose bottles with a wider palette such as the Chandon Rose which is fresh with strawberry, watermelon and cherry notes.

    The overall take away in difference between a good glass of pink with champagne is really in the variety of fruitiness. They are all derived from the quality and quantity of red grapes that goes into making the brand.

    Why is rose champagne more expensive?

    The simple truth in why Rose champagne prices are higher is twofold. 

    First and foremost would be labour intensity and secondly would be its rarity.

    Labour Intensity

    Rose champagne is very labour intensive to produce. 

    As we have touched on briefly before, the making of champagne is a highly regulated process. Each step of the making process, from the vineyard practices and maintenance, to the fermentation process, each step an important step towards the perfect farm is unharmed.

    This means that each step involved in making pink champagne requires skilled workers from start to finish to be trained. Training takes time and labour from the producers. 

    Realize that in order to achieve the pink hue, a double amount of fermentation and therefore effort is required.


    Having only 5% of champagne manufactured per year being Rose is the second reason why Rose Champagne rockets in price. 

    With this level of rarity, there is a much higher demand that results in higher market prices than regular champagne.

    Is Rose better than champagne?

    Now comes the real question: Is Rose better than champagne? The answer to this question is really up to the person holding the glass. 

    As most expert tasters have said that there is actually no key difference in terms of quality between a bottle of pink and a bottle of gold.

    One key concern that most would voice is the versatility of rose champagne. Most would look at the common understanding that white wine pairs better with white meat, seafood or salty food for when brut is served. 

    What then would be the space that rose would take if it is champagne added with red grapes?

    Thankfully, like its golden counterpart, Rose and regular champagne goes fairly well with most dishes. Whether it is white poultry such as chicken, seafood such as fish or lobster, or a good cut of steak, Rose will pair well. 

    This makes for a very versatile bottle, especially if you are on the lookout for something to go with a party menu that may have greater variety than most.

    The only factor that denotes difference in value is the fact that there is less pink champagne being produced yearly. It therefore comes down to personal preference when choosing between the two.

    Do you prefer to keep to the tradition of dry, crisp and straight champagne, or perhaps opt for something a little more eye-catching. 

    Surely the roses, pink hue of playfulness that most will identify with rose champagne will add a little something to your celebration. Not to mention the flavor of fruits that adds to the style of festivities you are holding.

    Rose champagne will also go well with the decor of a really girly party (think pink!). 

    What is the best rose champagne?

    At this point we can point you to two bottles that could start you off in search of your favorite. These two bottles of Rose will be good introductions to the world of Rose Champagne. Hopefully once you’ve taken a taste of these, you will begin searching for more to one day arrive at a personal favorite.

    McBride Sisters Rose

    The McBride Sisters Rose is 90% pinot noir and 10% chardonnay, a rather strong mix of red with chardonnay. 

    Rose Champagne - Pretty in Pink OSUXVW

    This high percentage of red gives it ample fruitiness. With floral rose petal notes with scents of strawberry and red berries, the fruitiness of this bottle carries over to its taste. Additional tastes for a strong palate of strawberry, cranberry and raspberry is available as well.


    An authentic french rose champagne with a beautiful salmon pink hue. The BouvetRose carries with it very fine bubbles and a mild mousse. 

    The BouvetRose is more diverse in scent, a telltale hint of raspberry mixed in with red currant and peach. On its taste you will have a variety of earthly notes with a herbal spice over a blackcurrant taste.


    At the end of the day, the preference in Rose is really up to you. A bottle of pink, playful fruitiness will definitely set your soiree apart from the one down the street. The pretty pink hue is a plus for any celebration’s eyes too, not to mention the exquisite taste on the palate. We only ask that you take your time with your selection, just as you would with wine or any other bubbly. Explore the broad selection that is available in this unique branch of champagne and find the bottle that will satisfy your bubbling needs.

  • What is Brut Champagne? The 7 Levels of Brut

    After drinking or shopping for champagne and bubbly or even sparkling wine for a while, you will notice a very common word – brut. This is not the name of a brand or company. In fact, brut is the French word “dry”. Brut indicates the level of sweetness in sparkling wine. In the step before corking the bottle, champagne producers will add a small amount of sugar before corking the bottle.

    What is Brut Champagne? The 7 Levels of Brut Brut level in Champagne
    Photo by Dmitry Zvolskiy from Pexels

    Champagne is actually sparkling wine made in the French region of Champagne. It can only be called champagne if it is made there. 

    Brut levels in champagne 

    Sugar is added to champagne to reduce sour flavours in the wine as champagne is usually very acidic. There are different options for champagne as humans’ sweetness preferences are different.

    The amount of sugar in the champagne can either make your glass taste like sweet nectar or bone dry. 

    There are few levels of brut – from brut nature to doux. Doux is just an indicator for the level of sweetness in the champagne bottle. It takes very little sugar for wine to taste sweet. 

    According to Wine Folly, there are 7 levels of Brut which are:

    • Brut Nature (bone dry): 0 – 3 grams per litre
    • Extra Brut (bone dry): 0 – 6 grams per litre
    • Brut (dry): 0 – 12 grams per litre
    • Extra dry (fruity): 12 – 17 grams per litre
    • Dry (off-dry): 17-32 grams per litre
    • Demi Sec (sweet): 32 – 50 grams per litre
    • Doux (sweet): 50+ grams per litre

    If you like your champagne dry, get brut champagne but if you like it sweet, get champagne that is a doux, as stated on the label of the bubbly’s bottles. 

    Taste and Flavor Profile of Brut Champagne

    Brut is normally dry and the sugar adds a certain amount of sweetness to it. However, because there are so many varieties available, every brut wine tastes different. 

    For example, the Dhondt-Grellet, which is extra brut as compared to the G.H Mumm will definitely vary in taste and sweetness. 

    Although champagne is always aged, you will notice that there is a fresh floral, nutty, or bready note on the nose. Some may give out an aroma of bright fruit like apple or pear. Brut champagne is not as fruity as compared to some other sparkling wines. However, you may still notice notes like citrus, stone fruit and quince. 

    Some bottles also exhibit a lightly savory note. 

    Brut champagne is a popular choice for toasts and celebratory occasions because it tends to be rather well-balanced and silky. 

    To understand the taste of sweetness, you can refer to the following:

    • Brut Nature (also called Brut Naturelle/non dosage: Bone dry as no sugar is added
    • Extra Brut: Very dry
    • Brut: Very dry to fairly dry. This is the most common style of champagne
    • Extra dry: Dry to medium dry (or medium sweet)
    • Dry: Medium dry. It’s right in the middle of the scale
    • Demi Sec: Pretty sweet!
    • Doux: Sweet tooths will love it. It is dessert level sweet

    Follow the above guide for sweetness in your champagne and we doubt you will go wrong.  

    Brut Champagne vs. Extra Dry Champagne

    As you may have already figured out, champagne is made in a full spectrum of styles. From bone dry (brut naturelle) to extra dry to doux, there is such a large variety! 

    Brut means “dry, raw, unrefined” in French and it only refers to champagne bottles that has less than 12 grams per liter. 

    What is Brut Champagne? The 7 Levels of Brut dryness of the champagne
    Photo by Fotograf Jylland from Pexels

    This will result in the taste of champagne not particularly sweet, or in other words – dry. 

    However, extra dry champagne is usually sweeter than brut. Sugar levels usually fall between 12 to 20 grams of sugar per liter. 

    We understand the terms can be rather confusing so read on for more tips to buying before making a purchase!

    Buying tips for brut champagne

    Wine shops, liquor stores and certain restaurants usually carry brut champagne. To ensure that you are buying the right products, look for the words “brut” and “champagne” on the label of the bottles. Keep in mind sparkling wine can come from many parts of the world but only champagne is made in France. 

    The quality of brut tends to be high as rules and regulations for this type of champagne is quite stringent. Therefore the price tends to be higher. 

    If you cannot afford brut champagne, you may also try buying dry cava instead. Cava is a type of sparkling wine made in Spain. You can also try dry prosecco. Another option to replace brut would be American sparkling wine from Northern California. 

    If all else fails, go for the iconic brands such as Dom Perignon or Cristal for high quality brut champagne. You can also try Moet & Chandon or Krug. They are known for their long history of producing high quality brut champagne. 

    How are brut wines and champagnes made?

    Before corking the bottle, there is a champagne making process called “liqueur d’expedition”. This is where champagne producers add a small amount of sugar. 

    What is Brut Champagne? The 7 Levels of Brut brut wine
    Photo by Дарья Шелкович from Pexels

    As sparkling wine, without the sugar, tastes very sour since it is very acidic, adding the different amounts of sugar is what reduces the acidity and the sour tastes. Of course, as time passed, champagne producers found that different people have different preferences when it comes to sweetness, do not be surprised if you find a large range of brut in champagnes. 

    Think of adding sugar to the bottle as the same as adding sugar to coffee. Some people like to add sugar and some people prefer it black. It is the same with champagne!

    How to serve brut?

    Like all the types of champagnes, there are certain steps to take in order for you to best enjoy brut. Brut tastes best when it is nice and cold! 

    To get full enjoyment from your bottle of brut, leave your bottle of champagne in the fridge for at least three hours. You can also pop it into an ice bucket that is filled with ice and water. 

    In order to keep it nice and cold, pour your bubbly into champagne flutes. Champagne flutes are shaped in a way whereby the long stems of the flutes prevent the drink from being warmed by your hands. Hold the stems! 

    If you are drinking straight from a bottle, it is best to keep the bottle on ice in between sips from it. You do not want lukewarm bubbly. 

    Food pairings with brut

    There are plenty of food types to complement the dryness of your sparkling wine. 

    As it has slight hints of sweetness, brut champagne pairs beautifully with cheese and fatty meats. This is because it helps to balance salty meals with the touch of acidity. Seafood dishes also go well with brut. 

    Brut champagne will usually go well with fried food such as fried potatoes, ham and swiss quiche as well as oysters and smoked salmon. You can also pair it with cheese! 

    Brut is also commonly used in champagne cocktails. Other ingredients will add to the sweetness, which will play against the dryness of brut very nicely on your palate. 

    Brut Champagne and Headaches – Why? 

    Brut champagne actually has a reputation for causing headaches. However, there are several reasons for the said headache that are actually the main cause. Don’t blame it on brut just yet. 

    A few reasons for the headache after drinking brut may be:

    1. You need to drink more water

    Although you do not feel thirsty, that may not be so. Drink a glass of water with each glass of sparkling wine as a general rule. 

    Because of the bubbles and carbonation, the body tricks you into forgetting that you are thirsty. Drink up (but also drink water)!

    1. You are drinking a lot of brut! 

    You can easily consume a whole bottle of champagne. Usually champagne is drunk at a happy, fast pace during celebrations so you may be unaware of how fast you are drinking the sparkling wine. 

    Compared to a glass of red wine which is usually slowly enjoyed, be a bit more wary about how fast you are swallowing the brut. Slow down a little and enjoy the taste of bubbly too. 

    1. You drink later at night 

    Champagne usually goes along with late night parties and entertainment. Clubbing, welcoming the New Year and celebrations late into the night are where champagne is usually drunk. 

    This may also be a cause of that headache due to the lack of sleep and it is better not to blame it on the brut! 


    Brut is an ideal sparkling wine to drink if you really enjoy sharp sensations on your palate with a hint of sweetness. Remember that brut means “dry” and is not a type of grape or wine. Serve your brut cold and pair it with salty meals for the best enjoyment! Although you may be partying hard, it may be because of other factors that you have a headache and not because of the brut. So drink safely, whilst enjoying the bubbly sliding down your throat!