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How to Saber a Champagne Bottle Properly

And pull off a seriously awesome party trick.

bride sabered champagne
Photography by: Natalie Watson Photography

Opening the bottle with a sword or knife is one impressive party trick. Can you imagine showing off your form in front of all your guests? Now that's how to kick off a party. While the trick itself is awesome, you'll need to make sure you can pull it off and wow your guests…in a good way! And it's not even that difficult, once you know how it's done. Event designer Bronson van Wyck explains the essentials, step-by-step.

 

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1. Chill the bottle to between 45 and 48 degrees—colder temps lower pressure and inhibit vibrations, which makes the bottle more stable for sabering. To ensure the neck of the bottle is nice and frigid, place the bottle upside down in an ice bucket for 20 minutes beforehand.

 

2. Do a safety check. Make sure that you have room to swing freely and that the bottle is pointed away from onlookers. And give guests enough time to get their phones out—sabering was made for social media.

 

3. Carefully remove the foil around the cork completely. Then unwind and discard the wire basket.

 

4. Find one of the two vertical seams running up the bottle. Hold the base of the bottle firmly in one hand, pointing it away from you, tilted at a 30-degree angle, seam up.

 

5. With your other hand, hold the saber flat against the bottle. Firmly slide the blade along the seam of the body, hitting the lip at a slight angle (remember to follow through). The cork and the glass ring will pop off intact, and the Champagne will be ready to serve.

 

While this technique will work just fine with a common kitchen knife, an official tool, like Christofle's sterling-silver-handled saber for St. Regis Hotels & Resorts certainly adds flair. It also comes with a hands-on sabrage lesson for two at the St. Regis of your choice.

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