No other drink is associated with celebration quite like champagne. The sparkling wine makes us feel luxurious and festive. Its associations are both universal and personal: it brings to mind vivid images of parties and sweet memories of time spent with loved ones, of beautiful weddings and just-because cocktail hours.
Once an indulgence enjoyed primarily by European royalty, champagne has become the drink of choice for special occasions. Weddings, ship christenings, even Major League Baseball victories would not be the same without the bubbly beverage. Champagne exists alongside many of our most treasured memories. We open bottles to mark important dates. We commemorate our successes and convey our hopes by raising a glass. We drink it to transform events into celebrations.
Your New Year's Eve gathering is the perfect time for popping open a bottle of champagne. Of course, the coming together of friends and family is a special happening in itself. But New Year's Eve is more than that. It is a time to remember the accomplishments of the past year and to mark a new chapter of our lives. It is a time to pause and reflect and embrace a fresh start. Such an occasion calls for a special drink with which to toast. It calls for "the wine of celebration". Your guests will hear the telltale pop of the champagne cork and feel honored that they are able to take part in the moment.
When selecting champagne gifts for your New Year's Eve festivities, you may encounter two different labels —sparkling wine and champagne— on bottles that of wine that look remarkably similar.
Here's the difference: the word champagne is reserved for sparkling wines that are produced in Champagne, France, from particular types of grapes under exacting standards. Any other sparkling wine is called just that—sparkling wine. But no matter the origin, for simplicity's sake, much of the time the beverage is referred to as champagne.
There are a few simple ways to make the most of your New Year's Eve gifts for you and your guests. First, always make sure your champagne (or sparkling wine) is well chilled prior to serving. A perfectly chilled glass of wine can be a transformative experience that you shouldn't miss out on. A few hours in the refrigerator or a half hour in a wine bucket filled with equal parts ice and water will do the trick.
Don't have enough champagne flutes to go around? Fear not: many champagne experts argue that white wine glasses are actually a better vessel, allowing the celebrant to more fully appreciate the wine's rich flavors and aromas.
And worried about what food to serve as an accompaniment? Champagne is beautifully versatile. Many varieties pair just as well—if not better—with fine foods as they do with rich, salty foods. It's true: many sommeliers recommend serving crowd-pleasing favorites such as fried chicken and french fries alongside your bubbly. Whatever offerings you decide to serve with your champagne, your guests are sure to appreciate the opportunity to mark the coming of the new year in your company.