Why do wine bottles have a dimple in the base?

Most of you would have already noticed that all wine bottles have a dimple at the bottom of

it… and of course there is a reason to it.

Before the IV century, wine bottles had a flat bottom but they noticed that there was a

balance issue with them. They couldn’t build a bottle that was perfectly flat at the bottom

so wine bottles could easily bounce. After breaking maybe thousands of bottles, the dimple

we know today was invented! It’s been proven now that it’s a very good stabiliser.

Moreover, this dimple has a second useful utility for sparkling wines: it allows the bottles to

be more resistant to the inside pressure by having a better distribution of the gas. It

diminishes the chances of explosion. We could also note that sommeliers use this dimple to

pour the wine.

Today, all wine bottles have this dimple except one and only one: the champagne Roederer,

cuvée Cristal. The reason is that in 1855 the Tsar Alexandre III ordered to have a flat bottle

bottom as he was afraid that some of his enemies would hide explosives in the dimple! No

one is afraid of this today but it became the Roederer cuvée Cristal’s signature!


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