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Why You Shouldn’t Put Champagne in the Fridge

It can ruin the taste, according to wine expert Marie-Christine Osselin.
Phoebe Hurst
London, GB
Foto via Flickr-bruger L.C. Nøttaasen

Just when you think you know something, life—or, at least, experts on the Internet—has a funny way of proving otherwise. Yesterday, we found out that we'd been cooking mushrooms wrong. Today, it's drinking wine—an activity that would appear to be masterable by anyone with access to a corkscrew.

But as the Huffington Post reported last week and other news outlets picked up today, it's not. Speaking to the Post, Marie-Christine Osselin, quality manager at French winery Moët & Chandon, offered Champagne storage advice that runs counter to many people's accepted wine wisdom.


Apparently, keeping Champagne (or cut-price Prosecco, let's be real) in the fridge is not a great idea.

Osselin told the website: "If you're planning to enjoy your bottle of Champagne (or sparkling wine) within three to four days of the purchase, it is fine to store the bottle in the refrigerator. [But] if it sits in the fridge for weeks, the cork can dry out due to no humidity. As corks dry out, the seal between the bottle and the cork loosen up and the Champagne will oxidise faster, changing its aromas."

The cornershop Cava that's been languishing in your fridge since your birthday last month? Yeah, its aromas are probably screwed now.

Of course, anyone wine aficionado enough to have their own wine rack or even wine cellar will know that keeping Champagne horizontally and in a cool place is the best storage method for preventing oxidisation. Osselin also recommends that bottles be kept away from direct sunlight.

And when you're ready to pop the cork? The wine expert suggests cooling your sparkling wine for 15 to 20 minutes in an ice bucket filled one-third with water. She has one last rule for drinking, too: "When serving, you should only fill your glass about one-third of the full way and hold your glass by the stem—otherwise the Champagne can warm too quickly."

Alternatively, you could just enjoy your semi-oxidised but nicely chilled Cava filled to the brim of a plastic cup. We won't judge.