Add some class to your entertaining
Numerous occasions call for a glass of bubbly. But why stop there? Instead of drinking just the wine, how about kicking it up a notch with champagne cocktails? Both are romantic and effervescent, but there’s something much more mysterious about these lovely cocktails.
Champagne’s bubbly character and delicate flavour pair well with many types of liquor from fruity and fizzy rum punches to sophisticated gin drinks. Liven up the bubbles with subtle spices, floral fruit syrups or hard liquors.
Besides the fact that champagne cocktails taste terrific, putting in that extra effort certainly adds to the romance. It’s a sure way to impress and make your partner feel more appreciated.
Champagne cocktails are often very easy to make as they only require a few extra ingredients. Recipes can be simple, more complex, subtle or nuanced — any way you prefer.
What exactly is a champagne cocktail?
It was all the rage in the mid-1800s and still boasts its share of fans up till today — loved by men and women alike.
A popular misconception about this cocktail is that it is a sweet drink. Made with quality sparkling wine and attention to measurement, it’s however best summed up as a connoisseur’s cocktail.
This drink has sparked a contentious debate among bartenders; perhaps counter intuitively heightening its appeal. Purists decry the addition of sugar and secondary flavouring ingredients to real champagne, but injecting dazzling colours and unconventional flavours are exactly what a mixologist lives for.
- Naturally, the better the ingredients used, the better the cocktail will taste.
- The champagne contributes the majority of the flavour of your beverage so go for quality champagne such as a good French brut Champagne instead of something cheap.
- When you use a drier champagne instead of one that is overly-sweet, it’s easier to control the level of sweetness in your cocktail.
- When making any cocktail with champagne, be sure to add the champagne to the flute last.
- Pour the champagne slowly over the other ingredients to avoid an overflow.
- Stirring these cocktails is not usually necessary as the bubbles do most of the work, but if you do, stir slowly and gently.
- Champagne cocktails should be served chilled but never iced.
- For the best results serve champagne cocktails straight away.
- Watch your limit. Champagne with liquor in it is a lot more potent than plain champagne. So not too many glasses if you can’t handle it.
Champagne cocktail recipes
Sparkling and tasty, the Axis Kiss is a semi-sweet, bubbly treat. The bitterness of blackcurrant berries used in the creme de cassis is offset by the smooth, richness of the almond amaretto
Dash of amaretto liqueur
Dash of creme de cassis
Pour the amaretto and creme de cassis into a champagne flute. Gently top with champagne.
Make the drink sweeter with larger dashes of amaretto and creme de cassis.
The Champagne Cocktail
This classic drink is one of the most popular champagne cocktails around. The bitters and brandy bring a refreshing warmth to the drink and the sugar cube dissolves to create a beautiful fountain of bubbles.
1 sugar cube
2-3 dashes Angostura Bitters
1 ounce brandy
Orange slice for garnish
Maraschino cherry for garnish
Chill the glass by putting it in the fridge or fill it with ice. Place the sugar cube at the bottom of a champagne flute. Saturate the cube with bitters. Add the brandy. Fill with champagne and watch the sugar cube dissolve in a fountain of bubbles. Garnish with the orange slice and cherry.
This fruity mixture is one of the easiest to make. As the mischievous name suggests, it’s pink.
1 ounce X-Rated Fusion Liqueur
champagne flute 2/3 full of champagne
Top with X-Rated Fusion Liqueur
The French 75
This drink dates back to World War 1 and it’s also called a 75 cocktail. Named after an innovative piece of French artillery, the French 75 features nose-tickling bubbly as the gateway to a perfectly integrated combination of floral gin and citrus.
1 ounce gin or Cognac
1/2 ounce Cointreau orange liqueur
1/2 ounce lemon juice
Pour the lemon juice, gin and Cointreau into a cocktail shaker with ice cubes.
Shake well. Strain into a chilled champagne flute. Carefully fill with champagne.