Champagne cocktails are a great way to celebrate weddings, anniversaries and, of course, New Year’s Eve. You don’t need to spend a lot on a bottle of Champagne to serve something memorable. As the following videos show, Champagne cocktails for New Year's and other festivities come in a wide variety of flavors, and if you don’t want to mix up a batch of cocktails, you can always stack glasses for a Champagne tower. To start things off, we’re going to get a tip from political commentator and onetime professional mixologist, Rachel Maddow.
Easy Champagne Cocktail
Before Rachel Maddow had thick-framed glasses, she had a bubbling career as a mixologist. In this Howdini video, she explains that Champagne cocktails can be incredibly simple (just add a sugar cube and bitters), and also a great way to revive Champagne that’s been open for a while. Hopefully you’ll remember that on New Year’s Day when you’re surrounded by half-empty bottles and are looking for a hangover cure.
Frankie Solarik is a climber and bar chef who created a sparkling wine cocktail to remind him of the floral bouquet that wafts over a chilly mountain in springtime. The ingredients for his “Spring Thaw” are gin, sparkling wine or Champagne, vanilla, orange blossom air, and a frozen ball of pink Campari granita. A beautiful glass and an ornate presentation assures plenty of “oohs” and “ahhs.” Just be sure to serve the "Spring Thaw" quickly.
Eben Freeman took inspiration from the Ivy Gimlet and a French 75 when he created his Royal Blush cocktail. Specifically, he borrowed The Ivy Gimlet's fresh mint and the French 75's tableside service, which cleverly changes color after being poured. The base of the Royal Blush combines vodka, lime juice, mint leaves, and simple syrup. Then cherry puree is places at the bottom of the glass and when Champagne is poured on top, the liquid changes color from green to red.
Strawberry Kir Royale
Somehow celebrity chef Brian Malarkey combined the idea of the Cannes film festival with National Strawberry month to create a Strawberry Kir Royale. The cocktail combines strawberry liqueur, dry Champagne, sliced strawberries and fresh basil leaf. In case you’re wondering, a traditional Kir Royale uses raspberry liqueur. Two nice things about this potion are that it’s easy to make a large batch of it beforehand and you can it will taste good with a wide range of sparkling wines.
The Grape Ape
A fun drink that drops frozen grape segments and lime sections in a glass with vodka, grape juice, lime juice, and Prosecco, the Grape Ape is a crowd pleaser that packs an strong punch.
Creating an impressive Champagne tower doesn’t require a lot of ingredients, just a lot of champagne glasses that are all the same size, carefully placed. You can arrange the glasses either as a square or circle. Be sure to build up the drama of the pour. Pro tip: You may need to add some Champagne to the glasses at the bottom of the fountain to make up for an uneven pour.
Special thanks to Absolut Drinks for helping to make this post possible.