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When there’s not a wine glass handy, almost any vessel will do to hold your vino in a pinch. But when it comes to bubbly, if you don’t have a Champagne flute nearby, don’t go reaching for a plastic or styrofoam cup instead. It turns out it could have a negative effect on the taste of your fizzy beverage.
A new study from Applied Research Laboratories at the University of Texas at Austin looked at whether the type of bubbles affects the taste of champagne. And researchers found that bubbles act differently in different kinds of containers, which does affect the taste.
“It turns out the bubble formation process on styrofoam is completely different that on glass,” explains lead study author Kyle S. Spratt. “So if you ever have to resort to drinking champagne out of a styrofoam cup, the bubbles will be quite different.
And it’s true for plastic as well. The bubbles actually stick strongly to the walls of the plastic and get bigger before they lift off. The study finds that bubbles in more expensive sparkling wines are smaller and more active, and presumably that tastes better. If bubbles stick to the sides and get bigger, research shows the sparkling wine doesn’t taste as good. And nobody wants that, so stick to bubbly from a glass from now on.
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