According to the legend, Bishop Valentine was executed on February 14th around 270 AD. because he performed secret marriages for soldiers despite the fact that Emperor Claudius II banned marriage. The golden era of the Roman Empire was on its way to an end and the Romans had to protect themselves from their attackers. The emperor believed that married men with emotional ties to their families were less efficient soldiers. He issued an injunction prohibiting soldiers from marrying and forced single men to join his armies. Before the execution, Valentine managed to smuggle out a love letter to the prisoner’s daughter. The letter was signed “From Your Valentine”.
The celebration of “St. Valentine’s Day” began in England sometime in the 15th century. If you chose someone as their “Valentine” it meant that you would get engaged to marry.
In the mid-eighteenth century, it became common for friends and lovers in all classes of society to exchange small handwritten love messages. At the end of the century, printed cards began to replace the handwritten messages due to improved printing techniques. In America, Valentine’s cards were likely to be exchanged in the early 1800s. In the 1840s, Esther A. Howland began selling the first mass-produced Valentine cards in America.
Over time, Valentine’s Day has evolved into a commercial phenomenon and world trade ranks Valentines Day on top 10 among major commercial weekends, shortly after the Christmas trade, Black Friday, Easter and Year end sale. We express love to people we love, a love partner, close friends and secret lovers and mistresses. We can do it with fine words, courtesy and gifts … it is very common is to give away chocolate and champagne.
Since I would like to make the connection between Temperature Logging and Valentine’s Day, I think it may be appropriate to think about how to best keep chocolate. Milk chocolate can be stored for up to six months and dark chocolate for up to one year if stored in a cool, dry place. Also, the chocolate should not be exposed to sunlight or strong odours. The best temperature is between 16 ° C-18 ° C. It is not necessary to store chocolate in a refrigerator, in fact it can even degrade the taste. If the chocolate is exposed to moisture, a white coating will form. The moisture dissolves some of the sugar on the surface of the chocolate. When the moisture evaporates, the sugar is recrystallized but unfortunately in a coarser form so that the chocolate gets a grainy surface. Another defect that may occur on finished chocolate is the formation of “fat roses”. They are caused by other crystal forms near the chocolate surface. If the temperature of the finished chocolate rises, these unstable crystals penetrate the surface of the chocolate and create small white floral spots. The fat crystals, in contrast to the sugar crystals, are basically just a matter of appearance and do not mean a change in taste.
Tip: suitable equipment from the ICU range to keep track of storage of your chocolate is FH010, our wall-mounted digital sensor that monitors relative temperature and humidity, in combination with a network-connected BBO, XBB006.
When it comes to the champagne’s temperature when consumed, it is 8-10 ° C recommended. To cool the champagne a good suggestion is 10-20 minutes in the freezer or 2-4 hours in the refrigerator, to put the bottle out during the winter also works, however, it is important to keep track of the temperature so that the bottle does not freeze so that you destroy its noble content.
It is not just a perfect serving temperature that leads to the wine’s best possible quality. Correct storage is of the utmost importance to make the wine develop its best potential, the ideal temperature for storing champagne is around 11 ° C. It is important that the wine is not exposed to large temperature variations during the actual storage time, ie you should configure alarm limits in your temperature logging system to get warnings if the temperature deviates too much from ideal storage temperature. Wine thrives best in the dark, which is why most wines are kept on dark bottles, there are light sensitive sensors from ICU eg. FH009 that can warn if your storage space is exposed to light during too long time.
Tip: Our digital temperature sensor FT040 that can be connected to the XBB006 makes the job excellent, you can also connect more sensors to this BBO to record temperatures on different spots in your storage space.
If you store the champagne and the chocolate correctly and serve it at the appropriate temperature, the path to the heart of your loved ones is wide open.
We at ICU Scandinavia wish you all a fantastic Valentine’s Day!