Work begins on retrieving a haul of champagne considered to be the oldest in the world

Divers have begun salvaging bottles of what is thought to be the world’s oldest champagne from a shipwreck off the coast of Finland.

Approximately 70 bottles of the champagne will be carefully removed from 200-year-old ruins near the Aland Islands in the Baltic Sea.

Once taken out of the water, they will be immediately taped shut to prevent the antique corks from popping.

The champagne, which was stored in almost perfect conditions at a constant temperature of four degrees centigrade, and out of the sunlight, turned out to be drinkable when it was discovered in July.

According to the BBC, the champagne was heading for Russian imperial court when the ship sank.

If it is proven that the bottles were produced before 1825, it would be considered the world’s oldest champagne and could make over £40,000 per bottle at auction.

But the fate of the bottles is uncertain. According to local laws, objects older than a century are considered a relic and belong to the Aland authorities.

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