champagne

Cheers! Along with the New Year, why not try a new Champagne cocktail? Champagne is a symbol of celebration all over the world, and Champagne cocktails always add a festive touch to any event. Save the mimosas for breakfast and serve one of these new Champagne cocktails at your next party as your signature drink.

Always make sure your Champagne is ice cold for the best results – and the happiest faces at your party! Champagne goes down quick, so buy a couple more bottles than you think you will need at your party. Don’t worry about shelling out for high-priced Champagne like Crystal for these cocktails since you’re mixing it – feel free to use your favorite California sparkling wine or Italian Prosecco to create these bubbly beverages.

Blackberry Bellini: A twist on the traditional Bellini (Champagne and peach puree), this berry cocktail melds several flavors for a fun and fresh drink. For each cocktail, muddle six blackberries with two teaspoons of sugar and ½ teaspoon of fresh lime juice in a shaker. Fill with ice and add 1 ½ ounces of Cachaça (pronounced ka-SHA-sa), a Brazilian spirit made with fermented & distilled sugarcane juice. Shake well and then strain into a Champagne flute, then top with Champagne.

Champagne Mojito: Lighter than your standard mojito, this refreshing cocktail combines mint and lime for a classy version of the fan favorite. In a cocktail shaker, muddle a spring of fresh mint and a large slice of lime with 2 teaspoons of sugar until well mixed and juiced. Next, spoon the mixture into a Champagne flute and fill almost to the top with crushed ice. Add 1 ounce of light rum (such as Bacardi) and top it all off with Champagne. Garnish with a fresh spring of mint.

Violette Royal: A Kir Royal is one of the most famous Champagne cocktails, made simply with blackcurrant liqueur and bubbly. This updated version uses Crème de Violette, a sweet floral liqueur with the mild flavor and aroma of its namesake flower and a beautiful purple color. Unavailable in the United States for the last decade, you can now buy a version from Rothman & Winter that utilizes fresh violets from the Austrian Alps. Just pour a small amount (about 1 ounce or to taste) of Crème de Violette into a Champagne flute, and then top with Champagne. Voila!

Pomegranate Mimosa: The tried-and-true mimosa meets a super fruit for a punchy, tart cocktail with a festive red color. Simply fill a Champagne flute halfway full with pomegranate juice, and then fill to the top with Champagne. Add a few fresh pomegranate kernels to the bottom for a unique and edible garnish.

Bubbly & Berries: This cocktail combines liquor, liqueur and sparkling wine for a potent Champagne cocktail that is a perfect party-starter. Mix together 2 ounces raspberry vodka (such as Stoli raspberry) with 1 ½ ounces Chambord, a black raspberry liqueur. Add to a Champagne flute, and fill with Champagne. Garnish each glass with a fresh raspberry if desired.

image: ArunMarsh