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Nestled in-between rolling hills in the beautiful Wiltshire countryside, the Tidworth Polo Club hosted The Captains and Subalterns Tournament in July. The event, which is the second oldest polo cup in the world, saw a return for the Army Medical Services team (AMS), who had been out of action for a few years due to operational commitments. Over the course of two days, the Army, the Royal Navy, and the Royal Air Force teams battled it out for top spot.
Arriving early to prepare the horses, the AMS team looked to be in good form kitted out in their StaaG polo shirts for their first face-off on Saturday. StaaG, one of the events sponsors, are a British lifestyle brand with a keen focus on design and engineering; it’s unique and exclusive polo tops were befitting of such an historic event. Lunch followed the first matches, giving guests, players, and sponsors the chance to indulge in a Jean Boucton champagne aperitif in the stunning surroundings.
Led by Lt Paul Erhahiemen QARANC, the AMS team narrowly missed out on first place, instead they secured a respectable second in their division. The team captain was in a celebratory mood as he honoured the tradition by sabering a bottle of Jean Boucton Champagne and toasting his team. The weekend came to a close as teams enjoyed glasses of champagne by the stables and guests admired the cars from Jaguar Land Rover which were dotted around the pitch.
Sponsors, Jean Boucton Champagne, StaaG Fashion, Jaguar Land Rover Marshall Military, were all in attendance to watch their shared vision for a weekend of champagne, polo, and new partnerships become a reality.
Sabrage, or the opening of a champagne bottle using a saber, used for ceremonial occasions it dates back to Napoleon times.
It originated in France, after the French Revolution, when Napoleon and his army enjoyed victories all throughout Europe.
This meant that they could often be found celebrating with bottles of champagne, which Napoleon himself was particularly partial to!
The Hussars, Napoleon’s light cavalry, took to using their sabers to open champagne bottles after victories. It was a rousing start to many parties and a grandiose way to toast their leader.
The art of sabrage continues to be used today. Employed as a nod to tradition, or simply to add a sense of occasion, Sommeliers and champagne houses have kept this aspect of history alive.
Jean Boucton Champagne appreciates the historical aspect of sabrage and how it has been handed down throughout history. The sense of occasion and ceremony that sabrage evokes has made it an ever more popular technique.
As impressive as it looks, sabering champagne is actually quite simple once the basics are mastered.
How to Saber Champagne?
Before attempting to saber your champagne, be sure to chill the bottle.
This is important because the pressure in a warm bottle of champagne is higher than a chilled one, which could result in the glass shattering completely. Remove the foil from the neck of the bottle along with the cage. Locate the two seams that run along the length of the bottle.
The strike must be made against one of these two seams. Bottles are made in two halves, so the seams are the weakest spots on the bottle, which is why they are targeted. Hold the base of the bottle firmly and strike the bottle where the seam meets the annulus, or lip of the bottle. The strike should be in a clean straight motion, no curving. It isn’t necessary to hit the bottle hard, simply slide the saber firmly against the lip of the bottle.
Done correctly, sabering shouldn’t leave any glass fragments behind, so you’re ready to pour!
Jean Boucton Champagne celebrated the launch of the polo season with an exclusive evening hosted by De Beers, Mayfair. Polo players, members of the press, and VIP guests enjoyed exclusive access to the diamond jeweller’s private atelier, where they experienced Jean Boucton Champagne and a selection of innovative canapes. The evening celebrated the values and relationship that polo and Jean Boucton Champagne share, and was a fitting start to the polo season.
As the champagne flowed and canapes were enjoyed, VIP guests and professional polo players, such as Facundo Guevarra, mingled with De Beers’s executives, and Champagne ambassadors. Guests sampled canapes created by 3 Michelin star pastry chef, Joakim Prat. Prat, from Maître Choux, has previously worked as Head Pastry Chef at Joël Robuchon’s acclaimed London restaurant, L’Atelier. He is renowned for respecting the history of choux, whilst also looking to the future with his innovative flavours and savoury options. The master pastry chef collaborated with Jean Boucton Champagne to create the perfect patisseries to pair with the champagne. Guests discovered Prat’s passion for artistry and style, and enjoyed the sophisticated pairing of Champagne and Choux at the event!
As well as the delicious canapes, the exclusive venue made guests feel they were part of something very special, and offered them the chance to experience the world of Diamonds, polo and Champagne. This year’s hosts, De Beers, allowed guests to access some of their private collection. Marvelling at the diamond jewellers pieces, guests were given an insight into the elegance and simplicity of De Beers’s diamonds. With over a century of diamond expertise, De Beers is recognised globally as pioneers in diamond jewellery design. Guests were able to experience first-hand De Beers’s unrivalled knowledge and artistry, as well as the jewellers respect for heritage and refinement.
Together with celebrating the new polo season, the evening was also a chance to introduce guests to Jean Boucton Champagne’s new enterprise, Polo in White. The Launch of the Polo Season event will be held every year in different locations as part of the Polo in White concept. Polo in White is a fresh approach, which aims to associate the values of traditional businesses with Polo traditions, old and new. This authentic enterprise aims to bring polo back to its roots and celebrate family heritage, passion, and savoir fair. The Polo in White franchise will give guests access to the heart of polo. The opportunity to meet with players and share in a passion for the sport, is just one of the luxuries of getting to know polo authentically, from the inside.
The Launch of the Polo Season evening is one of the events building up towards the main summer event, the Polo in White Gold Cup. This polo tournament will allow guests to experience the traditions and elegant simplicity of the sport while enjoying Jean Boucton Champagne. The Launch of the Polo Season 2016 evening culminated in the polo shirt presentation. Facundo Guevara, team Captain and Polo in White Ambassador, was presented with a polo shirt by Veronica Munoz of the Argentinian Embassy and Polo Chic, as well as Jean-Christophe Boucton from Jean Boucton Champagne.
Jean Boucton Champagne invites you to work from the inside and explore polo’s values, traditions and passions, which are very close to those of champagne.