It’s almost time for the biggest champagne-drinking night of the year, but if you want to make this New Year’s Eve even more special, try one of these champagne cocktails instead of straight bubbly.
1. The Classic
This cocktail was served in the Metropolitan Hotel in New York City as early as 1934.
Place a sugar cube at the bottom of a champagne flute, splash with Angostura bitters, fill the rest of the way with champagne. The sugar cube melts slowly, pleasantly balancing out the bitters.
2. French 75
For another classic champagne cocktail, shake one shot of gin, fresh juice of half a lemon, and a teaspoon of sugar with ice. Pour into a glass (keeping the ice) and top off with champagne.
3. Champagne Cosmo
For an extra girly twist, fill a champagne flute three-fourths of the way, and top it off with a splash of cranberry juice and a splash of Triple sec.
4. Hard Champagne
For an extra kick, mix three parts champagne with one part bourbon and a splash of lime juice.
Serve with an orange twist.
5. Elderflower champagne
The simplest version of this cocktail is just to add a splash of Saint Germaine to a glass of champagne. This version is plenty delicious, but it’s even better with some muddled cucumber and/or a sprig of basil.
If you’re looking for something stronger, this is also delicious with a shot of gin.
6. Punch bowl
Champagne with strawberries is a classic, but it’s only the beginning. This one takes some preparation: Fill a plastic container with raspberries, strawberries and cranberries (amount depends on how many cocktails you plan to make — two or three berries per drink).
Then pour cognac over the berries until they’re all covered, close the container, and leave it in the fridge overnight.
When you’re ready to make your champagne cocktails, scoop a few berries — with some of the cognac/berry juice — into the bottom of each flute and top off with champagne.
Pour a float of pear brandy onto a glass of champagne. To make a float, pour the brandy slowly and gently onto the champagne once it’s stopped fizzing. Don’t stir.
Garnish with a slice of pear.
8. Drunk Brunch
The mimosa is the most common champagne cocktail, a staple at brunch. But dress it up a little and it’s fit for a New Year’s Eve celebration, too.
Fill a champagne flute halfway, add a shot of Grand Marnier and a splash of fresh orange juice.
9. The Times Square
Manhattan is a popular destination for New Year’s Eve celebrations, and it can be a fitting drink, as well. For a festive adaptation of the classic cocktail, fill a champagne flute halfway, and top it off with a shot of rye whiskey and a splash of Angostura bitters.
Drop a Maraschino cherry into the glass, it will mix the liquors on its way down and look pretty.
10. Champagne Mojito
This is exactly what it sounds like. Muddle mint and lime (you’ll need to do this in a separate glass, as most champagne flutes are too delicate). Shake with ice and a little sugar. Scoop into a champagne flute and will up with champagne.
This is delicious as is, but equally so and stronger with the addition of a shot of rum.
Always use chilled champagne and, if possible, chilled glasses.
Don’t use low-quality champagne. Rather than being masked by the additions in the cocktail, it will bring the whole thing down. But don’t use the best stuff, either. If you’re going to spend $100 on a bottle of champagne, just drink it straight.
Don’t mix in large batches. When the champagne goes flat, the cocktail loses its charm. So make one round at a time.