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A muselet is the wire cage on Champagne bottles, and other carbonated alcohol, that secures the cork in place preventing the cork from popping unexpectedly.

Muselet for sparkling wine ©

What does muselet mean?

A muselet is the wire cage on Champagne bottles and other carbonated alcohol, such as beer, that secures the cork from popping unexpectedly due to the pressure from the carbonation.

The muselet usually has a cap on top and is covered in a metal foil, which helps keep the muselet in place until opening.

Why using a muselet is necessary

Carbonated or fizzy alcohol is pressurized.

Champagne, for example, has a pressure of 6 bar. Earth atmospheric pressure, for comparison, is 1 bar.

Without a muselet/wire cage to secure the cork in place, the pressure in the liquid will push the cork out of the bottle.

Muselet and cork ©

How to open a muselet

Untwist the wire in half-turns to open.  Most muselet require six half-turns.

See our article on how to open Champagne safely for more on removing the muselet.

Muselet LanguageMuselet TranslationMuselet MeaningMuselet Pronunciation
FrenchMuzzleWire cage on Champagne that secures the cork in place.MEW-ZLAY

Read with confidence: I am a certified wine expert (WSET L3).