Does Putting a Spoon into Champagne Keep it Bubbly?

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

You may have heard the one about putting the end of a silver spoon down into an open bottle of champagne. The story goes that it keeps a bottle bubbly for days after you pop the cork. We’ve done it—many times. And you know what? The champagne does stay bubbly until at least the next day, but not for the reason you think…

Turns out the spoon has nothing to do with it. Robert L. Wolke, the food scientist and author of What Einstein Told His Cook 2 has debunked the spoon myth, saying there’s nothing about the handle of a spoon that will keep champagne fizzy.

The truth is that champagne simply does not go flat as fast as beer or soda because it is clear. He writes:

In order for a dissolved gas to escape from a liquid, the gas molecules must have a microscopic speck of material (a nucleation site) upon which to congregate until there are enough of them to form a bubble. The main reason that true Champagne stays bubble longer is that it is extremely clear and speck-free.

Then there is an explanation of the process by which true Champagne is clarified. So we’re guessing that cheap sparkling wine may not stay bubbly as long. Another tip: Make sure you refrigerate it. Carbon dioxide stays dissolved to a greater extend in cold liquid.

For us, the shiny spoon peeking from the back of the fridge is at least a reflective reminder to make mimosas in the morning….

Buy Wolke’s book: What Einstein Told His Cook 2, at Amazon

(Image: Flickr member oskay, licensed under Creative Commons)

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