In the process of manufacturing Champagne, riddling racks are a must have. Once the sparkling wine has began to age on the less, it will be time for the concluding stages. Riddling is essential to the life of Champagne as it collects the sediment in bottles and deposits it near the bottle’s mouth. This sediment is what helps to bring the bubbles bursting out when you pop the cork.
Champagne bottles are put on riddling racks at a 45 degree angle, comprising the two rectangular boards that have been hinged at the top of the rack. On each side of the rack, there are ten rows that contain six holes for the necks of the bottles. Due to their structure and shape, each riddling rack is capable of holding 120 bottles, although there are special models that are made to hold more.
The riddler, who places the bottles, will place a bottle neck into each one of the holes on the riddling racks. There are painted lines at the bottom of each bottle, which acts as a marker for placing the bottles. All markers point in the same direction, which makes it easy for the riddler to put the bottles on the racks.
Over the course of several weeks, the riddler will twist each bottle a few degrees. By doing this every day, the riddler will prevent the sediment from settling in one place. Once a few weeks have gone by, the riddler will slant the bottles to a 60 degree angle and ensure that each and every bottle on the riddling rack is neck down in the proper hole.
Once the riddling process is complete, the Champagne bottles will be placed in a freezer for a brief period of time. After an ice plug has formed along the necks of the bottles, they will be placed on a conveyor belt and taken down the line to a disgorging machine that will remove the crown caps from each one of the bottles.
Once the crown caps are removed, the pressure is in place. The pressure that is well known with Champagne bottles is from the bottle shooting out the ice plug, or the frozen sediment that is trapped in the bottle.
For the home collector, Champagne racks are also important. There are other factors involved with riddling racks, such as temperature and location of the racks. With manufacturers however; everything simply must be perfect. Champagne is a very popular wine throughout the world, ideal for celebrations and special events.
Riddling racks are essential to the process, including the infamous bursting bubbles. Champagne that doesn’t feature the infamous bursting bubbles isn’t really a tradition - and certainly wouldn’t be worth the investment.