Eat up and stay hydrated this New Year's Eve, because your night's going to get real crazy real fast. That champagne you’re popping will get you drunk much quicker than you could have imagined. Scientists have known since the 1920s (hello Gatsby) that bubbles intoxicate you faster than a flat beverage would, but that's not all. In 2007, scientists showed that drinking vodka mixed with something carbonated spikes your blood alcohol content to a higher level than just vodka. They attributed the spike to the presence of the bubbles. That means that when you down a glass of bubbly, you're going to get drunker way faster than you would with any flat beverage.
This means a few things for your drinking experience. For one, unlike the slow onset of a shot of liquor, you're going to feel the spike quickly and intensely. On the flip side, as you come down, champagne will make you feel the sedative effect quicker as your BAC decreases. A flatter drink makes for a steadier ride, rather than the quick rush of drunkenness followed by a rapid fall that carbonated drinks offer.
Another effect of champagne's spike of intoxication is that, for all the fun it can give you, you're going to have a worse hangover. Because, of course, the higher your BAC, the more alcohol you're absorbing into your bloodstream.
So if you want to party hard and party fast, drink up that champagne and have your wild night. If you want to start your New Year's resolution marathon training on January 1, you may want to stick to the flat stuff. Either way, best to you and your beverage this New Year.