The French 75 and My Favorite Variations

All of my friends know that I am pretty much always up for some kind of drink. And they all know that I’m an equal opportunity drinker. Red or white? Doesn’t matter. Vodka, rum, gin? Oh my! Mostly it’s just because I actually love the taste of alcohol – the buzz is just a pleasant side effect. I have even gone on record saying that I would drink a non-alcoholic gin.

The thing about cocktails though, as however many million different kinds that there are, they really only come down to two things: alcohol and mixers. While I definitely spread the love through the alcohol side of it… I really tend to favor a few choice mixers. Anything citrus is always a good start, but I especially like grapefruit. Whether it’s juice, zest, a candied peel garnish or a just a simple twist, the grapefruit is hands down my favorite. And if you pair that wonderful pink-fleshed fruit with something bubbly (I’m looking at you, champs) then you end up with one of my all-time favorite combinations – The French 75!

It’s incredibly easy to tweak and make your own favorite creations from the original recipe!

  The Original French 75
      • 1 part lemon juice
     • 2 parts gin
     • 2 dashes of simple syrup
      • 4 parts champagne

     Combine gin, lemon juice, and simple syrup in a shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a champagne flute or coupe and top gently with chilled champagne. Stir gently to mix and enjoy!

So there it is – one of the most simple and most delicious cocktails you can make. But let me tell you how to make it better! In the spirit of keeping it authentic, “pamplemousse” is how you say grapefruit in French.

  The Pamplemousse 75
      • 1 part grapefruit juice
      • 2 parts gin
      • 1 dash agave
      • A sprig of rosemary
      • 4 parts champagne

     Combine grapefruit juice, gin, agave, and rosemary into a shaker. Muddle, and top with ice. Shake and strain into a flute or coupe, and garnish with a grapefruit twist.

Easy peasy, grapefruit squeezy!

The best thing about this drink is how easy it is to cater to anyone’s taste. I think it would be amazing to host an Oscars party and have a French 75 bar, with different juices and mixers for people to make their own creation!

Here is just one more of the many variations you can come up with –

Spiced & Bloody 75
• 1 part blood orange juice
• 2 parts gin
• 2 dashes blood orange, ginger and rosemary syrup**
• 4 parts champagne

Combine juice, gin, and syrup into a shaker and top with ice. Shake vigorously, and strain into a flute or coupe, and garnish with a blood orange wheel or twist.

**Simple syrup is simple equal parts sugar and water, brought to a boil and cooked for a minute, and then cooled. Add 3 slices peeled blood orange, a 1-inch piece thinly sliced ginger, and a sprig of rosemary. Muddle all together and strain before cooling.

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