Champagne is a wine produced in the Champagne region of northeastern France. It is generally made of a blend of three grapes: Chardonay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier. These three grapes make up 98% of all Champagnes produced.
One of the most famous champagnes is Dom Pérignon, named after a French Benedictine monk of the 17th Century who contributed to the production and quality of champagne. Contrary to myth, he did not invent champagne; that honor goes to the English scientist and physician Christopher Merret. (Merret also produced the first list of British birds, but nobody seems to care about that much.)
How did the story about Dom Pérignon inventing champagne get started? An ad in the late 19th century had him saying, “Come quickly, I am drinking the stars” and the legend grew. Supposedly, one of his successors at the Abbey of Hautvillers spread the story in order to garner historical importance and prestige for the church. It’s a lovely myth, in any case. And Dom Pérignon did, apparently, make actual contributions to the production and quality of champagne.
If you want to sample the stars yourself, you can expand your efforts to check out entire galaxies! You can get REALLY BIG bottles of champagne. Here are the names for the most common large sizes:
Magnum – 2 standard bottles
Jeroboam – 4 standard bottles
Rehoboam – 6 standard bottles
Methuselah – 8 standard bottles
Salmanazar – 12 standard bottles
Balthazar – 16 standard bottles
Nebuchadnezzar – 20 standard bottles