Valentine's Day is upon us, yet again. Huzzah! While I don't go in for the general V-Day formula, (retail assault + unmet expectations = bitter disappointment) there's no good reason not to do a little something special on Feb 14. Behind all the red and pink things to buy lies a pleasant little kernel of sentiment – appreciate the ones you love, and make sure that they know it. Hard to argue with that. All too often we forget the simple joy that others get from our physical declaration of love, so when an opportunity arises don't squander it out of principle.
If part of your manifest devotion includes champagne this year, I encourage you to dedicate a small portion of the bubbly to a fine classic cocktail, the French 75 - Paris is, after all, the City of Love so we're coming full circle with our main theme. This is a good cocktail and can be elevated to greatness with a halfway decent bottle of sparkling wine and some attention to detail. For most it is a rare event to have a bottle of Champagne handy, so get romantic and seize this opportunity to try out a true classic in all it's glory.
1 oz lemon juice
1 oz simple syrup
1 ½ oz dry gin
3 oz champagne
Shake lemon juice, simple syrup, and dry gin in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Strain into a flute and top with 3 oz of a good, dry champagne. Garnish with a spiral lemon rind*
*Pro-tip – Cut your sprial garnish from the lemon, then squeeze the juice. Wrap the cut peel around a bar spoon to encourage a good spiral.
Enjoy the holiday with your special lady and remember that, as the French say “La vie est une fleur dont l’amour est le miel”