Champagne should be in Imperial units anyway

Hopes that EU ‘hangover’ will be cured with pints of sparkling wine
Ministers are pushing for a return of the imperial measurement for fizz favoured by Winston Churchill and vintners alike

Champagne, as fizz, only exists because of English advances in glass and bottle making. So, righteously, should be pints all the way.

17 thoughts on “Champagne should be in Imperial units anyway”

  1. OK… So you wrestle through that puff piece without actually smirking, and then you notice that the definition of the Pint they use is the EU-ified simplification of “50cl”, which a true Pint is most certainly not…

    Journalists, eh?

  2. OK as a pre-lunch livener, assuming you are drinking on your own. But at this time of year with people dropping in it should be a magnum.

  3. WTF are they on about? There’s no ban on using Imperial measures in the EU. France uses them, fo a start. I used to buy wine by the pint at the market in St Antonin Noble Val. We bought a shed in inches in Dpt 59. There’s a standard bottle of 750 ml if you want to describe it as a “bottle” but you can put plonk in any sized container you like as long as the volume’s on the label.
    It’s the UK had the crazy idea of banning Imperial measures

  4. OT but somewhat connected. Go anywhere here & they insist on serving wine in bloody great goblets. Small puddle in the bottom. When did that nonsense start? They weren’t doing it when I was down here in the 70’s. Lot of places it was the same as we do at home in France. A tumbler, not a “wine glass” at all. The french have more about wine than the spanish know & generally you get a proper sized glass with the correct shapes for rouge & blanc. It’s just something I find irritating although I wouldn’t mind if they filled them. And they don’t do it out in the boonies so much. I’m sort of presuming it’s the english influence. A bling thing.

  5. Bis- don’t know about the continent but the trend here is to serve G&Ts in goldfish bowls with stems. Highly off putting on its own, to say nothing of the various flavoured gins they flog including calling rasberry flavoured gin, “pink gin”.

  6. @HB I find the G&T thing highly amusing. Don’t matter what they insist on here they get Lidl gin & no one’s ever complained. Getting those plastic pourers out of the necks of the bottles so I could refill was a pain until & made a little extractor. Works as well with scotch too. It’s like most things. People buy the label not the contents. Why people drive BMWs

  7. @Julia.. That’s a bit “amateur”…

    Bung a dash of Angostura into the glass, swill it round so that the sides are coated, tip the excess away, fill with gin.! Perfection. 🙂

  8. Actual cocktail bartender here:

    “Bung a dash of Angostura into the glass, swill it round so that the sides are coated, tip the excess away, light the fumes, put out, fill with gin.! Perfection.”

    Brings the aroma of the bitters to the nose…..

  9. BIS: You should do as Alastair Sim’s headmistress in the St Trinian’s films: “to the top, come on, to the top”.

  10. All wine bottles used to be an imperial pint and a third (26⅔ fl oz, sold as 76cl), so a pint was simply a ¾ bottle. It was 1975 legislation from the EU that required them to be metricated, and a standard bottle was reduced to 75cl.

  11. “Bung a dash of Angostura into the glass, swill it round so that the sides are coated, tip the excess away, light the fumes, put out, fill with gin.! Perfection.”
    Oh, FFS, Tim! The point of firing a spirit is to get rid of the alcohol. A la crepes Suzette or brandy on Xmas pud. Terrible thing to do to an innocent spirit doing no harm.

    Unfortunately, Pink Gin these days is grain spirit flavoured strawberry. Or possibly grain. And possibly strawberry but more likely “strawberry flavour” E-number. Neatly counterfeited by adding a few drops of creme de frais to the Lidl. As far as a Pink-un’s concerned, alcoholic dental mouthwash?
    I’ve a bottle in the bar says on the label it’s Blue Nun. But it’s got a champagne style wired cork & what looks suspiciously like scraps of gold leaf floating around in it. Haven’t the slightest idea where it’s come from. Present I s’pose. There will, no doubt, someday be an easily impressed woman will drop her knickers under its influence. As long as I don’t have to share it. Blue Nun’s a bit of a joke in the German wine trade. Industrial quantities of blended scheisse bottled for the UK market

  12. Far too many moons ago I spent some time in the back blocks of New Caledonia. The local French drank a bulk red wine imported, I was assurred, in bulk from Japan. It was dispensed at the shop into bring-your-own bottles using a stirrup pump. The locals drank it in tumblers but not before adding a desert spoon or two of sugar and stirring vigourously. The red sugar encrusted glasses at table disabused any illusions I might have had held about French fine dining.

  13. @Chris Miller
    And the bottles are the size they are because they’re based on those old measures. Like a lot of metric standards, they’re a metric equivalent of a pre-metric** standard.

    *The standards are based on the requirements of whatever it is. A door is going to need to be the same size whether you measure it in inches or centimetres because there are no metric standardised people to walk through them. So the wood sizes the door’s made out of have to be the same sizes. The door will be say 1½” thick whether you measure it in inches or cm
    **Imperial’s just the UK’s version of standardisation of traditional measures. At one time, even within England, weights & measures could be regional &/or differ between trades

  14. Blue Nun’s a bit of a joke in the German wine trade. Industrial quantities of blended scheisse bottled for the UK market

    It’s entirely a joke in the UK, too – see Alan Partridge, Andrew Neil passim. I spose it’s the English equivalent of Thunderbird, (the Scots equivalent being Bucky).

  15. Like a lot of metric standards, they’re a metric equivalent of a pre-metric standard.

    As I’m sure you know, if you buy 5x10cm timber on the continent and measure it accurately, you’ll find it’s actually 2″x4″. It’s only 1.6% difference, but these things matter.

  16. @CM
    Curiously enough, that’s not actually true. Most of the places one goes to buy timber offer peculiarly metric European sizes. There’s a a logic to Imperial standard sizes. Most of the sizes share a face width with a size up or down. So you can construct things where the faces line up because the narrower face of one will butt up with the wider face of another. European sizes don’t tend to do that. It’s the same with the lengths. Most UK timberyards sell lengths that correspond with what you’re mostly trying to construct. So you can buy a length where you can cut a piece for an upright & the remainder gets used elsewhere. Economical use of timber. With European lengths there seems to be a lot smaller range so you end up with lots of unusable lengths left over.

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