Skip to main content

The question

Does Champagne keep its fizz longer if you dangle a spoon inside the neck of an open bottle?

The answer

Ah, you’ve drummed up the Energizer Bunny of wine myths; this one never gets tired. Short answer: no. Spoons do not preserve bubbles, not for you, not for me, not for Uri Geller.

Especially popular in Europe, where a silver, rather than stainless steel, spoon is often recommended, the technique involves inserting the handle into the neck of a half-finished bottle, with the spoon’s wide bowl of course preventing the utensil from falling in.

Story continues below advertisement

I believe last time I addressed the claim was six years ago, when I cited an experiment by Stanford University chemistry professor Richard Zare and food-science writer Harold McGee. For me, that work pretty much laid the myth to rest. The following year, Scientific American also weighed in on the topic, citing not only the Zare-McGee research but also a test by the Comité Interprofessionnel du Vin de Champagne (CIVC), the trade association of Champagne producers in France. With plenty of local bubbles at its disposal to perform an authoritative debunking, the CIVC found no difference, fizz-wise, between spooned and unspooned bottles that had been left open.

If you want your sparkle to stay bright, store the wine in the fridge, even assuming you can’t reseal it. Lower temperatures help keep carbon dioxide dissolved longer as a liquid versus letting it escape as a gas. Or you can do as I do and plug the top before placing the bottle in the fridge – with a proper Champagne stopper.

But I won’t sign off without bringing you fully up to date in spoon-and-sparkle news. Did you hear the story about Madonna that made the wine-publication rounds? The pop icon recently posted a video on Instagram in which she’s up late in the studio “eating” what appears to be Champagne by repeatedly dipping a tablespoon into her wine glass. Her own caption for the video: “Soup du Jour … #midnightsnack.” And that’s why she gets to be Madonna and we don’t.

Beppi Crosariol will once again be participating as The Globe’s wine expert on the July 2019 Globe and Mail Seine River Cruise. For details on how to reserve your cabin on this voyage down the Seine from Paris to Normandy visit GlobeNormandyCruise.com.

E-mail your wine and spirits questions to Beppi Crosariol. Look for answers to select questions to appear in the Wine & Spirits newsletter and on The Globe and Mail website.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter