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Category Archives: Sparkling wine

23 Skidoo

August 22, 2010 (part of Cocktail Chronicle)

St-Germain Elderflower liqueur is essential here. If you believe their website, the blossoms are hand harvested in the foothills of Alps and ‘bicycled” to the processing facility by sturdy old peasant men and women. In the world of John Deere tractors with chaser bins, this sure makes a better marketing story. True or not, its somewhere between lychee and passion fruit aroma is the focal point of this drink.

I love the original recipe but unfortunately, I am out of lemons today. Lime makes a different drink but still delicious. Phew.

Based on 23 Skidoo in MIXSHAKESTIR (Makes 2):

  • Half a lime, cut into 4 pieces
  • 2 oz (4 tbsp) Gin
  • 1 oz (2 tbsp) St-Germain Elderflower liquor
  • ½ oz simple syrup
  • 6 sprigs of thyme
  • 6 oz of chilled sparking wine
  • 2 sprigs of thymes for garnish (optional)


  1. Chill 2 champagne flutes.
  2. Muddle limes, thyme sprigs and simple syrup in a shaker.
  3. Add gin and St. German. If you can, put it aside for 2 hours or more.
  4. Before serving, add ice to shaker. Divide mixture equally among the chilled flutes.
  5. Top each glass with 3 oz (6 tbsp) of sparking wine. Drop a piece of ice and serve.

Coming up Roses

August 10/11/12/13/21, 2010 (part of Cocktail Chronicle)

Uniquely flowery and gorgeous to look at.

The original recipe has too many unusual (to me) items such as rose syrup, rose water and raspberry-infused rum.  I replace them with what I do have: Rose geranium in my garden and crème de framboise.  Call it Apéritif de Opportunité.

Inspired by Coming up Roses in MIXSHAKESTIR (Makes 2)

  • Wedges of ½ lime
  • ½ oz simple syrup
  • 16 rose geranium leaves, plus 1 more
  • 0.3 oz crème de framboise (raspberry liquor)
  • 3.3 oz white rum
  • 4 oz sparkling wine, well chilled.


  1. Chill 2 Champaign flutes.
  2. Muddle lime wedges, lime juice and simple syrup in a shaker.
  3. Strain.
  4. Add rose geranium leaves, crème de framboise and white rum.  Put the shaker aside at room temperature for at least 4 hours.
  5. Before serving, rub the rim of the glasses with the reserved geranium leaf.
  6. Strain what’s in the shaker, divide equally among the flutes.
  7. Top each flute with 2 oz sparkling wine and serve.

Night and Day

August 8, 2010 (part of Cocktail Chronicle)

4 different liquors are poured in order and drunk unstirred. The result is not only visually stunning. The liquors slowly mingle with each other but not uniformly. Every sip is a little different from the previous. As you approach the end there’s just enough Campari left to give you a pleasingly bitter finish.

There’s so much going on in this drink, there’s no need to open your Bollinger Grande Année. I buy whatever the cheapest sparkling on Trader Joes’ shelves ($4.99) and it’s great.

Except for the sparkling, pour each of the remaining 3 slowly. Try to pour the Campari from the side of the glass so most of it will sink down to the bottom.

This is not a pouring-from-one-shaker or make-ahead recipe. No matter how many people you are serving, you have to make it one by one and à la minute.

Have your sparkling and Champaign flutes well chilled ahead of time.

Night and Day from Bartender’s Companion to 750 Cocktails (Makes 1):

  • 4 ½ tbsp sparkling wine
  • 1 tbsp cognac
  • 2 tsp Grand Marnier
  • 1 tsp Campari


  1. Pour the ingredients IN THAT ORDER into a flute with one piece of ice and serve.