Sometimes when something is so simple yet so absolutely correct in all its components, you don’t really think about where it came from. You just accept the gift that it is. Champagne cocktails are one such thing.
Still, the idea of a sugar cube in your glass of sparkling wine might seem odd. But if you think about it, it’s not so strange. Champagne (that is, from the Champagne region) is a cool-climate product, and pretty much from the get-go received dosage — a little bit of liquid sugar added into Champers to tweak the final flavor — as part of the winemaking process as a way to manage and balance out biting, harsher levels of acidity. It also became part of the way a Champagne house would create a signature style, and tease out multiple bottlings that could fit myriad occasions, from toasting to food pairing to dessert.
Using a dry-style sparkler as a balance to the cube in your cocktail is the way to go here — brut is the gold standard. Sparkling Pointe’s classic brut-style sipper (which you can pick up at Bottle Hampton in Southampton) is gorgeous by itself, but it also shines when it cozies up next to their very small batch XO Excellence brandy, made from the classic Champagne grape trio, pinot noir, pinot meaner and chardonnay.
Consider it your warm up for New Year’s — practice makes perfect.
Sparkling Pointe’s classic Champagne Cocktail
- 1 sugar cube (or 1/4 oz simple syrup)
- 3 dashes Angostura bitters
- 1/2 oz Sparkling Pointe XO Excellence Brandy
- 4 oz Sparkling Pointe Brut
- 1 large lemon peel