Sparkling wine is awesome. Sparkling wine cocktails are even better. And festive times call for festive measures.
Since it’s New Year’s and all, it’s probably worth taking a step up from your everyday $7 Prosecco. For an alternative that’s more sophisticated but won’t break your bank like Champagne, we’re fans of Chandon’s California-made Blanc de Noirs, seen here all decked out in its holiday best. Grab yourself a bottle (or few) and dress it up with these three simple cocktails.
Easy: Cranberry ‘Champagne’ Cocktail
Cranberries = festive. Bubbles = more festive. Pick up some cranberry bitters, widely available at gourmet stores, fancy groceries, or semi-fancy liquor stores, and you’ve got yourself a cocktail that takes just a few seconds to make.
Instructions: Dash 5-7 dashes of cranberry bitters in the bottom of a flute and fill with 5 ounces of sparkling wine. Garnish with a fresh cranberry or two.
NOTE: If you want to be a little fancier, make this in the style of a classic “Champagne Cocktail” by soaking a sugar cube in bitters before adding the sparkling wine, ensuring a constant stream of bubbles.
Have bags full of Clementines hanging around, you just can’t finish? Juice ‘em up and pair with a little bit of bitter Campari for this refreshing and super-seasonal sparkler. No shaking required.
Instructions: In a flute or similar glass, combine 1/4 ounce of Campari, 3/4 ounce of Clementine juice (or tangerine juice, if you can’t find Clementines), and 3 ounces of sparkling wine. Garnish with a Clementine segment.
Advanced: Sidecar 75
Here we’re mixing two of the all-time great: the Sidecar (a classic marriage of cognac, orange liqueur, and lemon) and the French 75 (which you probably remember with gin, but there’s real evidence it was actually invented with cognac).
Instructions: In a cocktail shaker with ice, combine 1 ounce of cognac, 1/2 ounce of freshly squeezed lemon juice, and 1/2 ounce of orange liqueur (we like Grand Marnier, Cointreau, or Combier). Shake that all up and strain into a cocktail glass. Top with 2 ounces of sparkling wine and garnish with a lemon wheel.