Learning how to open a bottle of sparkling wine the right way ensures you minimise spillage, spray, and wastage. It also means you do it safely, avoiding shooting a projectile in the direction of an unlucky person! What people often do wrong is try to twist the cork rather than the bottle.
Follow our expert tips to open your bottles of bubbly like a certified sommelier and get the most out of your sparkling wine – with no casualties along the way.
How to Open Sparkling Wine Bottles in 5 Easy Steps
These steps work for a standard corked bottle of sparkling wine:
1. Remove the wire cage
The first step is to remove the foil or protective wire muzzle over the cork of your sparkling wine. Make sure the bottle is angled away from you. Ensure you keep your thumb firmly on top of the cork while carefully loosening the cage, just in case the cork is forced out prematurely by a build-up of pressure.
2. Get the right positioning
Next, hold the bottle at a tilted angle (away from you and anyone else!) while keeping the fingers of one hand wrapped around the cork and the other hand at the base of the bottle.
3. Twist the bottle
Now it’s time to start twisting. Keep hold of the bottle and the cork in the same position as above and twist the bottle – not the cork. Keep twisting until you feel the cork start to loosen as the pressure eases.
4. Ease it out
As you feel the cork loosening and hear a soft fizz, just keep easing it out until it’s free. Upright the bottle and you’re done! If you’ve followed these steps, the sparkling wine should stay in the bottle, ready for you to serve seamlessly.
How to Open Sparkling Wine With a Plastic Top
Some sparkling wine comes with synthetic or plastic corks. These materials do not degrade or dry out in the same way as wooden corks do.
Despite these differences, opening a bottle with a plastic cork follows the same principles as a wooden cork:
- Carefully remove the outer foil or cage while keeping a thumb on the cork
- Hold the bottle at a tilt, with one hand on the base and the other hand around the cork
- Twist the bottle (not the cork) slowly
- Listen for a fizz as the pressure eases and the gases gently release then ease the plastic cork out
How to Open Sparkling Wine Without a Corkscrew
The above methods for uncorking sparkling wine do not require the use of a corkscrew. It’s actually not recommended to use a corkscrew for opening bottles of fizz because it adds unnecessary danger as a projectile with less control.
How to Remove a Sparkling Wine Cork That’s Stuck
If you find your sparkling wine cork is extra stubborn, just run the neck of the bottle under warm water (not hot) for a few minutes. Do be careful with this method as sudden heat can agitate the carbonation to sudden pressure, producing a similar effect to shaking a can of fizzy soft drink before opening. Keep gently testing the corks’ movability as you warm the neck.
How to Serve Sparkling Wine
So, you know how to open your bottle of sparkling wine properly, but do you know how to serve it, too? As producers of award-winning sparkling wine, it’s safe to say we know a thing or two about how to handle it.
Pay attention to these key factors and you’ll be able to savour your wine and really get the most out of it:
- Glass choice: Champagne flutes are best for sparkling wine as they help to capture the aromas of the wine and keep its fizz. The long stems are important as they mean you can hold the glass without warming the bowl where the wine is, which can negatively affect the temperature.
- Temperature: Sparkling wine should be chilled before serving so it’s around 7˚C. You don’t want it too cold as it will hamper your enjoyment of the flavours and will dull notes.
- Proper pour: To pour sparkling wine without spillage, simply start with a splash in the glass, wait for the bubbles to settle, and then continue pouring so the glass is around two-thirds full.
All you have to do now is enjoy the wine. Make sure you know how to taste wine properly to get the most out of it!
Restock on Delicious Sparkling Wines From Bolney Wine Estate
Make sure you always have a bottle of bubbly on hand with our special subscribe and save offer. This means you get wines of your choice delivered to your door every month, hassle-free. Choose from a range of award-winning sparkling wines, red, white and rosé by browsing our impressive selection below, all of which were handcrafted on our Sussex estate.