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Sabering with an Ax

For winning the guest blogger contest for the San Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef Competition I received a Flip video camera. ┬áThis means that I can now publish video content to, as the kids say, further the multimedia experience here on Food With Legs. I’ve batted around a couple ideas on what to do for the inaugural video on my YouTube channel and I think I’ve settled on a real winner.

This past weekend at a friend’s family ski chalet I sabered a bottle of the Chateau des Charmes Brut Methode Traditionelle with a splitting ax. (The scenery and plaid shirt were entirely unplanned, I promise.)

As you can see in the video (shot by Jonathan Cooper) the sharp end works better than the blunt. The break wasn’t perfectly clean at the bottle’s lip, I think because of that slight twist I (subconsiously) made in the bottle’s orientation before switching to the sharp bit. Almost all of this delicious brut was preserved and matched excellently with a delicious chateau de bourgogne cheese. I’m happy this worked out so well and now find myself eyeing everything from Gatorade bottles to cans of soup with an evaluating eye.

I hope this goes without saying: Try this at home at your own risk. Whether sabering or opening a bottle of sparkling wine in the more usual way, always keep the cork covered and pointed away from windows, small children, and pets. Traditional champagne sabers are dull, axes definitely are not. If you want to use an ax like I have be mindful of its path and keep spectators well back. For accuracy I found it helpful to choke up on the ax but take into account that this will bring your right hand closer to the breaking glass.

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  1. Lauren says:

    Nicely done David! I think you’ve stepped in to the danger zone now… be careful with your future sabering endeavours. Just ask Jeremy Day about his stitches from NYE…

  2. foodwithlegs says:

    Thanks for the comment, Lauren. Sabering definitely isn’t the safest way to open a champagne bottle, I know. I’m not trying to set any records here though. Maybe I’ll have to add my cut-proof glove to the operation. Which hand did Jeremy injure?

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