Champagne has a special status among the French wines, but while drinking bubbles on its own is refreshingly effervescent, fruity and drinkable, sparkling wine from the Champagne region can also be used in some creative and delicious cocktails. So, here is a list of the best champagne cocktails out there. And a bit of background on each...
Named after a hero of the French resistance and former mayor of the French town of Dijon, the Kir Cocktail, or Kir Aperitif, is the simple blending of crème de cassis and white wine. The Kir Royale, however, is the champagne version. But how do you make it?
Take around 15ml of crème de cassis and pour into a champagne flute
Top it up with Brut Champagne
Garnish with summer berries, to create a light and fruity summer drink
The ultimate in sophisticated champagne cocktails.
With a history extending back to the mid-nineteenth century, the classic Champagne Cocktail is perhaps one of the oldest cocktails.
Place a brown sugar cube in a champagne flute
Soak with two or three dashes of Angostura bitters
Adding 25ml cognac
Top with chilled champagne
A sugar cube, rather than loose sugar, must be used to ensure a slow dissolve, and a garnish can be made with an orange twist. The original and best champagne cocktail.
Death in the Afternoon
One of the many champagne cocktail recipes linked with Ernest Hemingway, Death in the Afternoon was the iconic writer’s contribution to a 1935 cocktail compendium.
Place 15ml lemon juice, 7.5ml absinthe and 7.5ml sugar syrup in a shaker
Add ice and shake
Strain into a champagne flute
Top with ice champagne
The slightly risky use of absinthe brings a kick to the champagne cocktail; that explains why Hemingway wrote a book of the same name about bullfighting.
Its name taken from a flowering plant, this is a simple cocktail that was invented in the 1920s, and is very similar to the Buck’s Fizz, which has a higher ratio of champagne.
Combine 90ml champagne and 90ml fresh orange juice (or blood orange juice) in a champagne flute
Garnish with an orange twist
Variations include the Grand Mimosa, which adds orange liqueur for some extra strength. A light drink that is popular for weddings and other daytime occasions - these champagne cocktails are also great at brunch.
A mint julep that is more Paris than Kentucky, the Champagne Julep is not as strong as the original, but is a minty, fruity and sparkling champagne cocktail. Here's the recipe:
Take eight fresh mint leaves
Press gently with a muddler
Add 15ml cognac, 7.5ml sugar syrup and a dash of angostura bitters
Shake with ice before adding 90ml champagne
Strain into a julep cup filled with crushed ice
Garnish with a sprig of mint
A classic cocktail that traces its origins back to Paris in the First World War and was also featured in the film Casablanca, the French 75 still hasn’t lost its crisp and citrus appeal.
Take 15ml fresh lemon juice
Add 15ml sugar syrup and 30ml dry gin
Shake with ice and strain into a champagne flute
Top with champagne and garnish with a lemon twist
Named after the Hollywood star perhaps due to her love of the colour pink, this cocktail is a rose-hued drink perfect for berry lovers.
Crush 4 fresh strawberries with a muddler in a shaker
If you are in the mood for a classic drink, try this fruity tipple that was devised in Harry's Bar, Venice in 1948. This cocktail can made with Prosecco or champers, plus peach purée and peach liqueur and is a lovely pale pinky-orange.
A simple yet elegant champagne cocktail, that will most certainly tickle your taste buds. Here's how to do it:
Pour 10ml of elderflower cordial into a champagne flute
Add 30ml of dry gin, a splash of lemon juice and a few raspberries.
Top with chilled brut champagne or sparkling wine
You might think champagne flutes filled with Guinness aren't the height of sophistication, but you'd be wrong. In fact this cocktail was supposedly created in 1861 to honour the death of Queen Victoria’s husband, Prince Albert. An unlikely pairing, the champers and Guinness just works:
Fill a flute with Guinness up to halfway
Top with champagne
Use a spoon to perfect the layered drink
Who said champagne cocktails couldn't be fizzy AND creamy?