Religions mainly influence the celebration of New Year until it spread throughout the world making it secular. Even if people follow different calendars, they celebrate it just the same with loud firecrackers and noisemakers, elaborate fireworks and champagne corks popping.
In addition, drinking champagne makes the occasion more special whether you welcome the new year at home, in a hotel or in a bed and breakfast in Bailbrook Lodge. But why is it special to toast champagne than wine during the New Year? Understand how this sparkling drink got a role in the celebrations.
How the bubbles started
There are two myths telling the origin of the sparkling champagne. One of it is about a Benedictine monk, Dom Perignon, tasked to get rid of the wine’s bubbles due to re-fermentation. He drank it and despite his failure they admired the taste of the botched wine.
The second story is about King Clovis in 5th century, who converted to Christianity after his victory over territory war. They crowned him in Reims, France’s Champagne region, and called for a celebration asking for a lot of wine. But the wine carbonated during shipping causing it to sparkle. To cover it up, they labelled it as a new type of wine only for the rich.
A symbol of eminence
In the 16th century, European aristocrats associate champagne with their royal parties displaying luxury in a charming fashion. They believed it has positive effects on women’s beauty and man’s intelligence. At the time, they were the only ones who could drink it because it was very expensive.
But as the price of champagne declined and the drink became common, champagne began marketing it as a regular drink for special occasions.
Its sparkling widespread
After the French Revolution, the rituals of New Year celebration changed into a more secular approach. People used the drink in place of religious rites, like christening the first voyage of a ship using champagne rather than by a priest’s, smashing it during wedding ceremonies, ringing in the New Year, etc.
Moreover, after the Industrial Revolution, monarchs and nobles had power and wealth conflicts. The champagne marketers then opened the use of champagne for anyone regardless of social status.
It is a custom that opening a champagne bottle in any celebration symbolises joy and abundance, as it overflows and sparkle. So, whether you will drink the champagne or just watch it spill, celebrate New Year’s Eve with the delectable drink, but in moderation.