Titanic Champagne or wines salvagedIs this a myth or true


Andrew Roper

Hi there and this is my first ever post on this site. I am looking for information relating to the claim from some people that there were in fact some wines lifted from the wreck. If so where are these today and who might have some information on how the wines were after so many years? I have the list of wines that were on board, so all I now need to know, is there any avaialble on the market at all?

John Clifford

Mar 30, 1997
Hi Andrew. Welcome to the List.

I also remember a cartoon that poked fun at the idea of salvaging some of the bottles from the wreck site:
A man at a bar is on the floor, grasping his throat, as the bartender leans over and says to him "Of course the Chateua 'Morraine' (actual name not remembered) 1907 vintage is quite salty. We brought it up from the Titanic last week"

Paul Lee

Aug 11, 2003
When I was working at the Science Museum's exhibit last year, a lot of bottles, some with contents inside, were on display.



Feb 24, 2004
Well its entirely possible the wine inside is still good- On the Missouri River in 1856 the Paddle-Wheel river boat "Arabia" wrecked and was buried in the silt. It was found in the 1980's and the discoverer opened up a jar of pickles that was in with the hundreds of jars of food items- and ate some- still crisp and tasty!! (The thought of that tho makes me want to throw up!!)

rene bergeron

Jun 16, 2001
Hello everyone, in my collection I have some wine, Champagne and beer bottles from the White Star Line RMS Republic. These bottles where raised from the wreck in 1987. On one of the Champagne bottles, the cork come off and you can still smell the Champagne. I don't know if its still good or not but you can still smell it. I don't know much about wine or Champagne but doesn't beer get skunky after awhile. Hope this helps.

Jack Devine

Jan 23, 2004
Wine and beer generally won't last too long before turning into some variety of skunky or vinegar. Some wines especially can improve with age, but only to a point. Canned foods like the jar of pickles, if they were properly prepared, may last for decades. The difference is that canning is meant to stop all biological activity in the container. I'm not brave enough to try the 1856 pickles, but I do know of a jar of relish from the 1930's that looks to be perfectly edible today. Not that I'd try it, but it actually looks pretty good!

James Smith

Dec 5, 2001
Some Titanic wine bottles with liquid inside are on display in Salt Lake City. I'm no wine expert, though, and couldn't even tell you whether it was red wine, white wine, or what.

With the difference in external pressures between the bottom of the Atlantic and the atmosphere, I'd have thought that any bottles with their corks still in place would surely have lost them on the trip to the surface. Evidently that wasn't the case, which makes me wonder whether the bottles are still completely watertight, or if we aren't looking at some very lovely bottles of seawater.

Jul 9, 2000
Easley South Carolina
I think it would depend on how well they were sealed up. Were it not for the salt water which could conceivably get through the corks, the storage conditions are about as perfect as you can get: No sunlight and very cold, but not quite feezing. I suspect that if any of the victuals would still be fit to consume, the wine would be it.

Wouldn't want to chance anything else.

Noel F. Jones

May 14, 2002
I would surmise that a bottle of wine or spirits etc. could survive SOME external compression because it would itself be filled with a liquid physically comparable to seawater.

I would infer two provisos:

1.Still wine and spirits contain a proportion of alcohol which, unlike water, has some compressibility. Logically, under terminal external pressure I would expect the cork to be impacted to the extent of the compressibility of the contents. Sparkling wine and beer also contains dissolved CO2 in the form of carbonic acid (champagne bottles are pressure vessels but are not designed to withstand immersion to the deep ocean floor).

A further weak point would be the 'ullage', that small volume of gas between the liquid surface and the cork. This would consist of an admixture of the ambient atmosphere at time of bottling and the liquid content continually vaporising in accordance with its vapor pressure. I would expect corks to be impacted to at least this extent. As for crown corks and screw caps, if these did not fail completely I would expect the glass to fail in way of the ullage.

If this was found not to be the case then my physics has failed me!


Jack Elliott

I am trying to obtain a copy of the wine list that was served on the Titanic the night it went down. Does anyone know how I can obtain one?

Jack Elliott

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