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Champagne Cocktail

champagne, sugar and bitters

The principal cocktail with champagne, closely tied to the emergence of modern Champagne in the mid-19th Century, and where sparkling wine jumped from the punch bowl to the single serving glass.

Modern champagne was an expensive, luxurious ingredient from the start, so the Champagne Cocktail could get quite elaborate—mainly in presentation—depending on the circumstances. The above drawing is from Harry Johnson’s books, and depicts elegant stemware worthy of the French wine and various fruit garnishes. The underlying drink is utter simplicity, and eminently malleable:

Champagne Cocktail

Build in a glass:

  • 1 bar spoon sugar
  • 2 dashes aromatic bitters

Fill with chilled champagne

Garnish with a lemon twist

Oxford Companion to Spirits and Cocktails, p. 138–9; barware icons courtesy of Haus Alpenz