The lovely classic French 75 cocktail is made with gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, and Champagne. A great drink for brunch or a fancy party!
A French 75 looks fancy, but it’s actually quite easy to make. Take a gin sour (gin, lemon, and simple syrup), add Champagne, and ! You have a French 75.
It’s great for parties since you can make it ahead of time, and a good excuse to drink gin at brunch. What’s not to like?
Why Is It Called a French 75?
The French 75 first appeared in print in 1927 and was named for a field gun popular during World War I, supposedly because it packed a similar punch.
The French 75 is not a particularly strong drink, but it’s so light and refreshing – with the herbal flavors of the gin and the grape flavors of the Champagne complementing one another so beautifully – that you might be tempted to finish yours fast. (Also, try this Blood Orange French 75!)
Which Champagne Should I Use?
The Champagne takes this gin drink to the next level and accounts for its brunch-friendliness. Although many recipes call specifically for Champagne, any kind of sparkling wine, Prosecco, or Cava will do.
Mixing it with the gin and lemon knocks out a lot of the nuances of a more expensive wine, so a reasonably priced sparkling wine is a good choice here.
Which Gin Should I Use?
You don’t need to spring for a very expensive gin for this drink; any mid-range gin (like Broker’s or Boodles) will do nicely.
That said, I am a particular fan of a French 75 made with Nolet’s Silver, a really beautiful gin with notes of rose and peach. And while I don’t usually recommend Hendrick’s gin for cocktail mixing (its cucumber flavors can throw things off), that gin is actually quite refreshing in this drink.
What Kind of Glass Should I Use?
This drink is perfectly sized for a 7- to 8-ounce Champagne flute. Mine are the Nattie from Crate & Barrel, which are really elegant and cost just $4 each, so you never need to stress if someone breaks one.
If your glass falls into that volume range, you can just drop in the gin/lemon mixture and then top with the Champagne. Otherwise, measure out the Champagne to make sure you’re getting the right proportions.
Make-Ahead and Batch Instructions
This drink is a great candidate for making ahead. Mix the gin, lemon juice, and simple syrup in advance and save it in the fridge for up to a day. When you’re ready to drink, just add Champagne and go.
If you want to make a big batch of this ahead of time for a party, just turn the ounce measurements into cups. (A cup is eight ounces, so each cup means eight drinks.) Mix a cup of gin and half a cup each of simple syrup and lemon juice in a pitcher with a handful of ice. Stir well, and keep in the fridge until you’re ready to mix with the Champagne.
More Fun and Fancy Cocktails to Enjoy!
Products We Love
Ice Cube Tray
$12.38 on Amazon
3-Piece Cocktail Shaker Set
$9.52 on Amazon
Hawthorne Cocktail Strainer
$12.99 (13% savings) on Amazon
This post may contain links to Amazon or other partners; your purchases via these links can benefit Simply Recipes. Read more about our affiliate linking policy.