How grateful I am to Veuve Clicquot for having figured out how to trap those tantalizing bubbles in a bottle! It is Madame Clicquot herself who, in the early 1800s, pioneered the méthode champenoise and crafted the first “modern” Champagne.
Champagne. The name alone conjures festivities and moments to be treasured.
At first glance, the constant rise of the bubbles in a glass, seemingly from nowhere, can make you forget time and place and get lost in their magical show.
At first sip, the surprising, delicious sensation caused by the explosion of hundreds of tiny bubbles in the mouth makes your eyes twinkle and your taste buds ache for a second sip…
If you haven’t guessed it yet, I’m completely wild about bubbles! And, although it’s hard to top the Zen-like high of experiencing a tall flute of brut, ice-cold Champagne, I do enjoy creating cocktails with a bit of that fizz in them.
So on New Year’s Eve, I love to serve a cocktail inspired by the classic French 75 (a concoction with a surprising bit of history: watch the video for the full tale!). But instead of using brandy or gin as in the original mix, I use a single malt Scotch. Scotch is not only loaded with flavor, it pairs brilliantly with Champagne. Add a dash of Cointreau for a touch of sweetness and to round off the flavors, and you have a cocktail that’s worthy of an end-of-the-year bash.
Here’s wishing you a very bubbly New Year!
I dedicate this post to my very dear friend, and extraordinary artist, Sky Pape. Sky has been working on a study of “bubbles,” and I was very privileged to see her first drawings. Thank you for the inspiration, Sky. Your bubbles are to the eyes and soul what Champagne is to taste buds!
active time: 5 min
- 2 oz (59ml) single malt Scotch
- 3/4 oz (22ml) Cointreau
- 12 oz (355ml) Champagne or sparkling wine
- 4 large lemon peels
- Shake Scotch and Cointreau with ice cubes until shaker is frosted. Divide into 4 chilled champagne flutes. Top with the Champagne or sparkling wine. Garnish with the lemon peel and serve.
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Disclaimer: As always, my point of view is my own. I do not accept samples, and have no commercial relationship with any product, food or wine company.