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The secret of opening is to hold the cork tightly, and twist the bottle gently with the other hand. This
applies leverage to the cork, and makes it easier to remove than when twisting the cork and holding the bottle still. It also lessens the risk of the cork breaking in half, leaving the lower half still in the bottle. If this happens, pierce the cork with a needle or sharp tool to release the pressure, then use a corkscrew but carefully. The wine will be less sparkling, but the bottle will have been opened much more safely.

As you turn the bottle, you will feel the cork begin to move as the pressure of the gas in the wine pushes it up. When you detect this, gently ease the cork out with fingers and thumb.

Have a glass ready, and pour a little wine straight into it before there is a chance of any escaping. Hold it slanted: the wine will froth less if it slides rather than falls to the bottom. If you first chill the glasses, the bubbles (known as mousse) will last longer and the wine will stay cooler longer.

 
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