Contrary to popular belief, Hipsters and Don Draper did not create the Champagne Cocktail. They were, however much a part of the Champagne Cocktail Renaissance that has seemed to resurrect the fizzy concoction from its mid-20th-century heyday. The Champagne Cocktail was a Civil War period cocktail created by the "Father of Mixology", Jerry Thomas, who quite literally wrote the book on cocktails.
Jerry Thomas lived only to be 45, but in his short life he became the most revered and respected of bartenders in the 1860's. Jerry traveled the country mixing up delightful potions from the Gold Rush of California to New Orleans and New York City. His book, How to Mix Drinks; or, the Bon Vivant’s Companion, published in 1862 collected and created cocktail recipes that until then were passed down orally and never recorded. The Champagne Cocktail was simply created to be a fancy cocktail, and it is; simple and elegant in its entirety and the base of much creativity.
Sparkling Wine, or Champagne Cocktails (and no, Mimosas aren't included here) are a perfect way to play with the varying styles and types of sparkling wines- and a great way to use that off brand bottle you were gifted at your birthday. Using a luxury brand Champagne is fruitless as the subtle nuances that make it luxury in the first place, are lost. Lucky for you, there are so many low and mid-range bubbles perfect for your cocktail cabinet! Here are 3 of our favorite Sparkling Wine Cocktails:
The Original, the bad ass, the one that makes a toast that much cooler. We suggest using a dry Sparkling Wine, Cava, Prosecco, or a Cremant.
1 sugar cube
Lemon or orange twist, for garnish
Soak the sugar cube with a few drops of Angostura bitters and drop into a champagne flute. Top with champagne or a sparkling wine. Garnish with a lemon or orange twist.
2 part Lemongrass
2 Part Basil (leaves only)
1 Part Mint (leaves only)
1 " seeded skinned cucumber
1/2 part ginger
1/2 part serrano chili (seeded & thinly sliced)
1/2 part lime zest
1/4 cup simple syrup
Muddle all (except lime zest) and add warmed simple syrup. Steep overnight. Add lime zest. Top with Sparkling Wine. Garnish with Mint, Basil, Lime & Cucumber Slice.
St. Germain & Champagne
A new favorite of Team Bubblyfest's; simple, and refreshing. We suggest a good demi-sec sparkling that is a touch sweet and a touch dry.
Garnish of Choice (we love watermelon and strawberries!)
Fill a tumbler with ice. Fill three-quarters of the glass with dry champagne or prosecco. Add thinly sliced fruits and mint as garnish. Top off with St-Germain. Drink with feet up.