Close Menu

Champagne house teams up with French fencing champion for sabrage

Maison Duval-Leroy has appointed French fencing champion Manon Apithy-Brunet as its official sabreuse.

To mark the partnership artisan Champagne producer Duval-Leroy has launched a video filmed at the Château de Vaux-Le-Vicomte, located 50 km south-east of Paris. The film shows international fencing champion Apithy-Brunet and Louis Duval-Leroy (the sixth generation of the family) perfecting the art of sabrage.

The origin of sabrage (the elaborate technique for opening a Champagne bottle with a sabre) has been attributed to the Hussars who fought under Napoleon Bonaparte. They are said to have used this method of opening bottles when celebrating their victories.

According to a spokesperson for Duval-Leroy, mastering the art of sabrage calls for “a suitable weapon, a steady hand, finely-honed skills and a certain flair”, so naming sabre fencing champion Manon Apithy-Brunet to represent the Champagne house worldwide was “an obvious choice”.

Apithy-Brunet was two-time European sabre champion in 2023 (individual and team categories), and is currently ranked fourth in the world in her sport. Her place on the French Olympic team was confirmed in February, and she is a hotly-tipped favourite for the Olympic Games in Paris in 2024.

“Sabring a bottle of Champagne is an elegant gesture, but also a solemn and magical moment,” said Louis Duval-Leroy. “For a few seconds, time stands still
before all assembled express their joy – some people even make a wish whenever they witness this ritual. I shall certainly think of Manon every time I sabre a bottle, and naturally I hope wish her every success at the Olympics in Paris this summer.”

Apithy-Brunet called it “an honour to represent this outstanding French house on the international stage”.

“Maison Duval-Leroy and I share key values – creativity, high standards and the pursuit of excellence,” she explained.

Watch the video announcing the partnership here:


It looks like you're in Asia, would you like to be redirected to the Drinks Business Asia edition?

Yes, take me to the Asia edition No