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Champagne


Yep, champagne is an English invention. It was in the sixteenth century that the Brits started to get a taste for fizzy wines.

They imported white wine from Champagne and added sugar and molasses to start it fermenting all over again, storing the heady concoction in specially-made glass bottles.

In 1662, the physicist Christopher Merrett presented the Royal Society with a paper in which he detailed what is now called méthode champenoise. He did this thirty years before Dom Perignon, the man generally considered to be the inventor of champagne, even got close to any bubbly.

It wasn’t until 1876 that the modern brut style champagne was perfected, and then it was mainly for export to Britain. The UK is France’s largest customer for champagne buying, in 2004, twice as much as the USA, three times as much as Germany and twenty times that of Spain.


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15 May 2011
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