— A champagne specially developed for the microgravity environment of outer space has found its way into Earth orbit.
Maison Mumm, one of the world’s largest champagne producers, has teamed up with manned spaceflight company Axiom Space to launch Mumm Cordon Rouge Stellar, the “first champagne bottle and tasting experience designed for travel.” spatial”. The bubbly will fly on Axiom crewed missions starting in 2023 and eventually will be available on the company’s future commercial space station.
“Axiom’s collaboration with Mumm and the Mumm Cordon Rouge Stellar recognizes that in order to bring humanity into space, we cannot just bring humans, we must bring human traditions,” said Michael Suffredini, President and CEO of Axiom Space, in a statement. “This philosophy of celebrating humanity reinforces our purpose for Axiom Station, a next-generation destination that will serve as a thriving home in space to enable a diverse economy, deeper exploration, and enable more humanity to access to space.”
In development since 2017 and first announced a year later, Mumm Cordon Rouge Stellar is now fully compliant with spaceflight requirements as certified by the French space agency CNES (Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales or Center National d’Etudes Spatiales). Space Studies). in compliance with AOC Champagne regulations, certifying the integrity of the wine.
“Innovation has been part of Maison Mumm’s identity since 1827 and Mumm Cordon Rouge Stellar is a perfect illustration of this,” said César Giron, President of Maison Mumm. “This project brings together excellent French know-how for the benefit of the conviviality that is so dear to us here on Earth.”
“As early as 1904, Mumm was present on board with Commander Jean-Baptiste Charcot to celebrate the first successful French expedition to Antarctica. Tomorrow, he will accompany the life of the pioneers of the 21st century in the same way in this new territory which is the ‘space,” Giron said.
Ensuring both flight safety and the preservation of its contents, Mumm Cordon Rouge Stellar comes in a half-glass bottle held in an aircraft-grade aluminum shell and secured by a stainless steel opening and closing device . The upper part of the bottle, called the “service”, is made up of a long neck surmounted by a stopper and a ring, the latter retaining the stopper while serving as a lock for the stainless steel mechanism of the bottle.
Beyond the bottle, Mumm Cordon Rouge Stellar was also designed to take into account the differences in champagne tasting conditions in space. The bubbles do not rise to the surface in microgravity, so they do not release the aromatic molecules that contribute to the taste of the wine.
Instead, Mumm Cordon Rouge Stellar is dispensed as a foam, which then coats the walls of the mouth. A specific blend of pinot noir, Mumm’s signature grape variety, with reserve wines from the last five years delivers notes of ripe yellow fruits and vine peach, but also dried fruits, hazelnut and praline.
“My goal was to retain the freshness and power of Mumm Cordon Rouge, and to enhance the intensity of its aromas with more aging and a dosage liqueur made with wines aged in oak barrels,” said the master of cellar Laurent Fresnet.
Mumm Cordon Rouge Stellar performed a “zero gravity” parabolic flight, but to finalize its development, it will be launched on an upcoming Axiom Space mission. The Houston-based company recently signed an order with NASA for its second private astronaut mission (Ax-2) to the International Space Station, slated for launch in the second quarter of 2023.
Axiom also signed agreements last week with Türkiye, the Canadian Space Agency and the Saudi Space Commission to fly astronauts on future missions.
“In space, it is essential to maintain a link with the Earth and its culture. Symbol of an art of living that has stood the test of time, champagne has this universal appeal”, declared Jean-François Clervoy, French astronaut to the European European Space Agency which collaborated in the creation of Mumm Cordon Rouge Stellar.
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