Classic Champagne Cocktail

Classic Champagne Cocktail

This minimalist drink of sugar that’s been soaked in bitters and topped with Champagne was first mentioned in Jerry Thomas’s book 1862 “How to Mix Drinks.” It’s both festive and resplendent with bubbles as written, but there’s also room to customize: Split the amount of Angostura bitters with a lesser-used bitter (grapefruit, celery, orange, persimmon, for example) from your bar. Trade granulated or Demerara sugar for the sugar cube: The drink’s flavor will remain the same, lacking only in the drama of the cube bubbling to its demise at the base of the glass. Finally, use Champagne if you’re on a champagne budget, and dry sparkling wine if you’re not.
  • Serves: 1 person



  1. Step 1

    Add the sugar cube to a chilled champagne glass. Douse with bitters, then top slowly with Champagne. Garnish with the lemon twist.