chocolatiers who make champagne truffles for a New Year's Eve post on DyingforChocolate.com, and I thought there must be several mysteries in which Champagne has a prominent role. I know that Champagne figures in Dashiell Hammett's Thin Man books. I remember Nick and Nora drinking lots of champagne in the movies. So I came up with a short list of 'Champagne' books to toast (and read) on New Year's Eve. I do have a New Year's Crime Fiction list, and champagne is featured in some of them, although not necessarily as the main theme. Please comment with any missed titles.
CHAMPAGNE IN MYSTERIES
Murder & Champagne by Ashok Banker
The Charlemagne Connection by R.M. Cartmel
Sparkling Cyanide by Agatha Christie
Tug of War by Barbara Cleverly
Champagne Fuhrern by Kare Hallden (in Swedish)
Champagne: The Farewell by Janet Hubbard
Champagne Blues by Ivan and Nat Lyons
Dry Bones by Peter May
Design for Dying by Renee Patrick
Champagne for Buzzards by Phyllis Smallman
Murder by Champagne by Keith Spicer
Champagne for One by Nero Wolfe
And here's a true mystery related story about Champagne, especially for history mystery folks. This was reported in The Daily Mail (UK) July 2010. Talk about a vintage that holds its own!
Divers have discovered what is thought to be the world's oldest drinkable champagne in a shipwreck in the Baltic Sea.
They have already tested out the contents of one bottle and claim it tastes 'fantastic' despite dating back to the late 18th century.
Diving instructor Christian Ekstrom said the bottles are believed to be from the 1780s and likely were part of a cargo destined for Russia.
'We brought up the bottle to be able to establish how old the wreck was. We didn't know it would be champagne. We thought it was wine or something,' he said.
Ekstrom said the divers were overjoyed when they popped the cork on their boat after hauling the bubbly from a depth of 200 feet (60 meters).
'It tasted fantastic. It was a very sweet champagne, with a tobacco taste and oak,' Ekstrom said.
The divers discovered the shipwreck near the Aland Islands, between Sweden and Finland. About 30 bottles are believed to be aboard the sunken vessel.
Read More Here.
And, then, of course, there's always Sabering Champagne, as opposed to savoring Champagne. Sabering is opening the champagne bottle with a saber. A talent a mystery reader and writer might have!
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