Champagne Saber – Sabrage

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Saber of Champagne

If you are looking for a new way to impress your friends at a party then look no further than doing a Champagne saber or sabrage because when done properly it will always look great. If there will be bottles of sparkling wine, a fine Champagne, or even a Prosecco bottle then the Champagne sabrage or saber is one trick you need to practice.

The sabrage or saber is essentially the art of removing the cork from a Champagne bottle with a saber. A saber is the mighty sword the cavalry used by Napoleon’s army back in the 1800’s, and it was when celebrating a military victory they would open a Champagne bottle using a Champagne saber or sabrage. Essentially the Champagne saber or sabrage was their way of celebrating their great victory.

Art of Sabrage

When you think about it the Champagne saber or sabrage is a great way to celebrate, as a fine Champagne is the drink of celebration anyway, and then they use their sabre to perform the sabrage or saber. Picture the scene, a soldier would be on horseback with sabre at the ready, before screaming victory as loud as humanly possible before taking the Champagne and then opening it in the most dramatic way possible using the Champagne saber or sabrage.
alt=" personalised champagne bottle, perfect unique gift for all occasions, with customised Champagne label"

Personalised Champagne bottle label

Sabrage Legend

Legend has it that the first ever sabrage or saber was performed by Napoleon. No-one knows for sure, but it certainly makes the story of the Champagne saber or sabrage better believing this!
There is logic to the legend I guess, back then a fine Champagne had none of the cage over them that we have these days, the corks were contained with wax and rope. Opening the bottle wouldn’t have been easy, and with them being on horseback and likely to be in a rush, the fact is that using their sabre would have been the logical way to open it, and there we have it, the Champagne saber or sabrage was born!
Nowadays rather than having to do a Champagne saber or a sabrage the opening of a bottle, luckily, is much easier.

Mastering the Saber

Sabrage is an interesting thing to see and learn though. When thinking about it obvious questions spring to mind, is it difficult? Will I injure myself? Are you expected to use a real saber? Well, we haven’t got a real saber right now, but many alternatives exist should you wish to try your hand at the sabrage or saber. Didier Mariotti who is the cellar master for G.H. Mumm explains that doing a Champagne saber or sabrage can be very safe and easy.
alt=" personalised champagne bottle, perfect unique gift for all occasions, with customised Champagne label"

Sabering Champagne

Sabering Champagne Methods

He goes as far as explaining that a Champagne saber or sabrage can even be done with a spoon or even a watch! The first most important thing is to get yourself a bottle of Champagne. He does add though that the sabrage or saber might not work on a larger bottle as the glass tends to be a bit more fragile. So you start by holding the bottle of Champagne at the bottom, the fine Champagne bottle is then tilted at approximately 40 degrees, and then you spring into action. And it is as simple as that, the Champagne saber or sabrage is then complete!

Here is the actual act of the Champagne saber or sabrage in a bit more detail. To help you, first find the seam of the bottle. If you didn’t know a bottle is made from a mould, so even a fine Champagne or luxury Champagne will have the line where the two halves were joined. This seam goes up to the neck, and to conduct the sabrage or saber you follow this seam with your tool of choice.

Then you follow this through with your arm and the act of the Champagne saber or sabrage will hopefully be complete! Mariotti insists that doing a Champagne saber or sabrage really isn’t difficult and that he has done it with a knife, spoon and even a clock!

Choose the right side!

When it comes to performing the sabrage or saber, you should always use the blunt side. The best way to do it is to go for speed rather than strength, it is not about breaking the neck, but going for a fast and fluid motion, and if you do this correctly your Champagne saber or sabrage should be a success.

The pressure that is already in your fine Champagne bottle will then do the rest for you. So there you have it, performing a Champagne saber or sabrage is a lot easier than you probably imagined. Mastering the art of the sabrage or saber can be done fairly quickly, it is not something you will have to waste countless bottles of luxury Champagne to perfect!

Some people will use anything to do a Champagne saber or sabrage, others like Julian White who is the ambassador in relation to Confrerie du Sabre d’Or does not agree and insists that only a saber should be used.

alt=" personalised champagne bottle, perfect unique gift for all occasions, with customised Champagne label"

Personalised Champagne bottle label

Champagne Saber Intrigue

If anyone should know about the Champagne saber or sabrage then perhaps Julian should know. After all he spent a good five years training and actually perfected the action of the sabrage or saber of a Magnum of Champagne!

While in reality anyone can do the Champagne saber or sabrage, there of course is a difference when it comes to smashing it at the neck and performing the action in a classy manner, and the latter can only be done using a real saber.

One tip is to start practicing the sabrage or saber, and doing this with a saber will be the best way. So there you have it, next time you buy a fine Champagne or luxury Champagne, why not give the art of the Champagne saber or sabrage a try. You never know, you just might surprise yourself and master the art of the Champagne saber or sabrage right away!