How to store champagne
Mumm Champagnes leave the House’s cellars once they have reached optimum maturity. If, however, you wish to age them further, how long they last will depend on how well they are stored. In ideal conditions, they will develop new flavors over time.
Storing champagne: The crucial role of temperature
The temperature of a cellar plays a decisive role in aging champagne in the bottle. The higher the temperature, the faster the wine will develop. The ideal temperature is approximately 50°F (10°C).
Variations in temperature, however, pose the greatest risk to a bottle and are therefore the most important element to control. Sudden temperature changes can irreversibly damage your favorite champagne.
This is also why larger bottles, such as magnums and methuselahs, are better for storing champagne, since, when temperatures fluctuate, they take longer to warm up and cool down.
Oxidation in champagne
Oxidation is a chemical reaction between the alcohol in wine and the oxygen in the air.
As Mumm Champagne bottles have a narrower and longer neck than traditional champagnes, the amount of air present is considerably reduced, creating superior conditions for allowing the aromas to develop.
This is another reason why a larger bottle such as a magnum or methuselah should be chosen when aging your finest champagnes over many years.
The influence of darkness and light
To ensure your champagne maintains its quality, it should be stored in a dark place away from light. This will ensure the wine is not subject to a phenomenon known as “light strike” that can lead to unpleasant aromas. This fault is often accompanied by a loss of color in the champagne and results in sulfur compounds being detected during tasting.
If you are unable to store your precious Mumm champagnes completely away from light, you can still protect them by wrapping the bottles in opaque paper (such as black silk tissue paper). Ideally, then, wine should be stored in the darkest place possible away
Storing champagne in a damp cellar can lead to mold forming on the cork, label, and bottle. Cellars that are too dry, on the other hand, can cause the cork to dry out, which can also have a negative impact on the wine.
To store your champagne in the best possible conditions, therefore, we recommend you carefully control the humidity in your cellar, which should ideally be between 60% and 70%.
Store bottles horizontally
The best way to store champagne is to lay the bottles on their side. The cork needs to stay in contact with the wine to ensure it remains damp, which in turn inhibits oxygenation.
With a vertically stored bottle the cork can dry out and even become damaged, although the pressure created by the effervescence reduces this risk in comparison with still wines.
If you wish to store your Mumm Champagnes for several years in the best conditions, we recommend:
- Opting for large bottles, such as magnums
- Storing bottles in a dark place
- Ensuring the temperature remains stable, at around 50°F (10°C)
- Ensuring humidity stays between 60% and 70%
- Storing your bottles on their side