Did you ever wonder why we celebrate New Year’s?  Here’s the story of the celebration and Times Square.  And the info on the crystal ball.

Before we open our bottles of champagne (or sparking wine), I thought it’d be interesting to read the history of champagne

If you’re trying to figure out what the difference is between champagne and sparkling wine, visit here for a video or here for the story.  The simple way to tell is the region — if your bottle is from Northern France (centered around Reims, Epernay, and Troyes), it’s champagne.  Everything else is sparkling wine.  The print story says that only 1 in 12 bottles are actually champagne! 

Regardless of whether you’re drinking champagne or sparkling wine — we’re buying (and drinking) a lot of it

Looking for inexpensive but tasty sparkling wine/champagne?  Go here — from their listing, I like Domaine Ste Michelle Extra Dry ($10.99) or St. Hilaire Orange Label Brut ($9.98).  I also like Cristalino Brut ($5.99 at World Market).  Worried you’d get a bad bottle for that price?  Read these reviews.

And if you’re hosting the festivities and have to make a toast (or want to make one), a few suggestions can be found here and here

For tomorrow, here’s the deal on hangovers