In terms of literary pairings, Champagne is the Oscar Wilde of wines. It is witty, deliciously naughty, and, like Oscar, it is sublime. It is hard to imagine Wilde’s sparkling, high-spirited exchanges in the drawing rooms of Belle Epoch London and Paris without also thinking of champagne.
Napoleon famously said, “In victory, you deserve Champagne. In defeat you need it.” A hundred years later, Churchill rallied his troops by declaring, “Gentlemen, we fight not only for France, but for Champagne!”
When a London newspaper reporter asked Lilly Bollinger when she drank Champagne she famously answered: I drink it when I'm happy and when I'm sad. Sometimes, I drink it when I'm alone. When I have company I consider it obligatory. I trifle with it if I'm not hungry and drink it if I am; otherwise I never touch it— unless I'm thirsty.