There are few moments more relaxing than the time spent sipping a flute of sparkling wine by the roaring fire on a cold January night. Alongside an assortment of hors d’oeuvres, the bubbles cleanse your palate and awaken your senses with each delectable sip. After a day spent dodging life’s seemingly endless bombardment of curve balls, the wine’s effervescence soothes one’s soul and fades the picture of reality.
Did you ever wonder why sipping a glass of Champagne or sparkling wine is such an uplifting experience? If we turn to science, the intoxicating effect of sparkling wine is enhanced by the tiny alcohol infused bubbles which diffuse more rapidly into the bloodstream compared to the inebriating component of a still wine – so you feel better, for a while anyway.
Setting the euphoria aside, it is the endless trail of bubbles that miraculously appear in each glass, rapidly snaking their way to the surface that creates all the pizzazz. Of interest is that this release of carbon dioxide is caused by minute imperfections and particles on the surface of the glass. This friction results in the release of carbonic acid gas from its liquid solution. In theory, if your glass was flawlessly clean, the bubbles would not form. How the bubbles found their way into the wine in the first place is an interesting story.