There are few cocktails more classic than a French 75. Named for the 75-millimeter cannons the French used during World War I, the drink itself is friendlier than the name implies.
A traditional French 75 comes together with just a few simple ingredients you probably already have on hand. For this week’s drink, I added a holiday twist to the iconic beverage.
Meet the “North Pole 75.” This one is the perfect Christmas cocktail for a festive evening in — it adds a little bit of extra sparkle to even the most mundane night!
“The North Pole 75” Cocktail
What you need:
- 1½ ounces gin, such as Tanqueray
- ¾ ounce fresh lemon juice
- ¾ ounce simple syrup
- 2 ounces Champagne
- 1½ ounces unsweetened cranberry juice
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
What you do:
1. In a shaker, add everything but Champagne. Shake well.
2. Pour over ice into glass of choice. Note: Traditionally, French 75s are served in Champagne flutes but for this cocktail we used a lowball glass.
3. Top off with Champagne. Cheers!
A Brief History of the French 75
Like many classic cocktails, including the margarita, the origin of the French 75 is disputed. Cocktail historian David Wonderich notes that the recipe first appeared in 1927 at the height of Prohibition in a book called “Here’s How” in a New York-based humor magazine.
Then, in 1930, the cocktail’s popularity was cemented in Harry Craddock’s “The Savoy Cocktail Book.”
How the drink was originally invented, however, remains a matter mired in mystery. In all likelihood, this drink does not have a single inventor. It was not altogether uncommon for Victorian and Prohibition-era drinkers to combine gin and Champagne, a combination that lends itself to the addition of lemons and sugar.
When the beverage was given the French 75 name, its reputation as a classic cocktail was sealed.
What holiday cocktail twist do you want to see next week?
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