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Champagne Cocktail

Champagne cocktail in a sparkling wine flute with bitterssoaked sugar cube and lemon twist.
Classic Champagne CocktailAlexandra Grablewski

A classic Champagne cocktail lets the bubbles shine through—with a hint of added flavor from a bitters-soaked sugar cube and added aroma from a citrus peel.

Editor’s note: This elegant sparkling cocktail, which dates back to the 1850s, hardly requires a recipe. You can substitute 1 tsp. sugar for the sugar cube if desired, and dash with 3–5 dashes of bitters—the Angostura adds warming spice to the mix, while the sugar softens the sparkling wine's tartness. Top with 4 ounces of chilled Champagne or sparkling wine. The wine is really featured here; more so, perhaps, than in many sparkling cocktails that came later.

This recipe originally appeared in 101 Champagne Cocktails by Kim Haasarud, and was first published on Epicurious November 4, 2010.


Makes 1 serving

1 sugar cube
Angostura bitters
Champagne or sparkling wine, chilled
Lemon or orange twist, for garnish
  1. Soak the sugar cube in Angostura bitters and drop into a Champagne flute. Top with Champagne or a sparkling wine. Garnish with a lemon or orange twist.

Reprinted with permission from 101 Champagne Cocktails by Kim Haasarud, © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
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  • Wonderful for New Year's eve celebration this year. It is on must do list.

    • Anonymous

    • Palm Springs California

    • 1/1/2022

  • Has always been one of my favorites. Great way to test a bartender and see if they know their stuff. Amazing how many try to give me a Kir Royale instead which is not AT ALL the same.

    • Anonymous

    • Washington, DC

    • 2/15/2017

  • One of my favorites, but, to make it even better, before adding the champagne, add about an inch of Lillet (a French aperitif wine) to the glass and then fill with champagne.

    • janekaren

    • New Haven, Ct.

    • 2/22/2012

  • This is my "go-to" cocktail! Simply perfect!! Classy too!

    • Anonymous

    • 12/26/2011

  • I couldn't find bitters - so I used candied ginger in lieu of the sugar & bitters.

    • contra_laura

    • 1/11/2011

  • This is a classic champagen cocktail, however, just to give it a bit more of a kick add a nip of brandy to the glass as well as the Bitters & sugar cube.(good french brandy if you have it) Voila, you have the Classic French Champagne Cocktail - French '75.

    • greenfk

    • Brisbane, Australia

    • 12/28/2010

  • The very best and simple to make!!! Always my drink of choice for a special occasion.

    • 2rallan

    • Stockton, CA

    • 11/24/2010

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