June has arrived! Which means there are plenty of celebrations afoot – weddings, anniversaries, graduations. Time to break out the bubbly.
And we have a cocktail for that! The Barbotage contains sparkling wine, but it’s also fortified with cognac (or brandy) and Grand Marnier. The result is festive flavor with a hint of orange.
Perfect for toasting.
Recipe: The Barbotage Cocktail
This cocktail may have originated as a hangover cure (no one is sure about its origins). But we prefer to serve it as a predinner pleaser.
It combines sparkling wine with orange curaçao, so it reminds us of a Mimosa Cocktail (which mixes bubbly with OJ). But the Barbotage has more nuanced flavor.
You don’t need a pricey sparkling wine to make this – save your good champagne for sipping straight. For this drink, a bubbly in the $10 to $20 range should work fine (Spanish cava is a good choice).
This drink takes about 5 minutes to prepare and serves 1.
- ½ ounce cognac or brandy
- 1 to 2 teaspoons Grand Marnier (to taste; about 1½ teaspoons is just right for us)
- ~4 ounces chilled brut-style sparkling wine
- orange twist for garnish (optional)
- Add the brandy and Grand Marnier to a champagne flute. Top with sparkling wine.
- Add garnish, if desired, and serve.
- A lemon twist would also work as garnish for this drink. Or you could just skip the garnish entirely.
- We’ve become quite fond of stemless champagne flutes, so that’s what we use when we make this.
- Under European law, only sparkling wine that comes from the Champagne region of northeastern France (and is bottled under certain conditions) can be sold as “champagne.” But there are plenty of other sparkling wines that are quite good – and they’d work in this drink.
- You do want to use a brut style (dry, not sweet) sparkling wine. Spanish cavas can be a good value. There’s also a lot of decent bubbly made in the US that is affordably priced. If in doubt, just tell your local wine merchant what you’re making, and ask for a recommendation.
- We use domestic brandy when we make this drink, but a French cognac would be wonderful.
- Grand Marnier is a premium orange curaçao. You could use a generic curaçao, but if you go that route, make sure it’s a good one – too many are overly sweet (and this drink shouldn’t be too sweet).
- Programming Note: It’s time for our annual Summer Sippin’ and Snarfin’ Series. During most of the year, we post one cocktail recipe a month. But come summer, we get hot and thirsty, so we post 2 or 3 cocktails each month (and some summer-appropriate food recipes in between). Enjoy.
“Nice cocktail!” said Mrs. Kitchen Riffs. “This is a perfect start to our annual Summer Sippin’ and Snarfin’ Series.”
“Yup, I know this is your favorite time of year,” I said. “Guess girls just wanna have sun.”
“Showing off your sparkling personality today?” said Mrs K R. “Unfortunately, that joke was half a bubble off plumb.”
“Hey, I’m fizzing with creativity,” I said. “I won’t cava in to pressure!”
“And I won’t comment on your pour quality decisions,” said Mrs K R.
Well, that just burst my bubble.
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I have never had or heard of this cocktail, but it certainly looks elegant and beautiful...and I bet it tastes amazing too, John.
I actually think I would enjoy this one! Yay!
Hi Angie, it's not that well known of a drink. And there are actually a couple of different drinks called the Barbotage. But this is the one to have. :-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Mimi, it's a delightful drink! And not too boozy. :-) Thanks for the comment.
You wrote; "If in doubt, just tell your local wine merchant what you’re making, and ask for a recommendation."
Everyone is always saying things like that. There are a few wine stores where you might get a nuanced/sensible answer, but it depends. The chain wine store "Total Wine" just opened here and the staff are clueless about wine.
best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com
Hi Mae, the Total Wine people are pretty bad. But wherever we've lived, we've always been able to find a locally-owned store where the people actually know their stuff. Probably we've been lucky. I know we're lucky to be within walking distance of two such stores! Thanks for the comment.
One of my favorite simple drinks is to add a sparkling wine to a liqueur. My favorite is probably during the winter when I make my own cranberry liqueur but I have used an orange liqueur on occasion too. But I've never had it with cognac so this is something new for me to try!
Lovely photo John!
Hi Barb, bubbly and liqueur work so well together! The cognac actually adds some nice "structure" to this drink. :-) Thanks for the comment.
Oh, boy. This one sounds VERY tasty!
Hi Pam, it is! :-) Thanks for the comment.
I love sparkling wine and mimosa so this is right up my alley. Sounds fantastic.
Hi Dahn, it IS fantastic. :-) Thanks for the comment.
That sounds like the perfect summer cocktail!
Hi Raymund, really delightful flavor. :-) Thanks for the comment.
*huge smile* John - methinks you are aware I usually enjoy ,my drinks 'straight' but I'll try this . . . a glass of the fizzy stuff, be it champagne or cava many connoisseurs oft even prefer or some of the beauties we bottle Down Under plus a little cognac I adore and the liqueur I don't mind . . . now, wonder how that would taste :) ?
Looks, Yummy John. We always have Prosecco on the chill, Grand Marnier and brandy in the liquor cabinet, so this'll be made soon...
Hi Eha, this is really a delightful drink -- cognac and sparkling wine play remarkably well together, and the orange of the Grand Marnier adds a festive note of flavor. BTW, I've sampled several sparkling wines from Australia over the years, and have greatly enjoyed them. :-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Ron, we've made this with Prosecco -- yummy. :-) Thanks for the comment.
I also have never heard of this drink but it sure sounds better than the overdone spritzer.
Hi Anonymous, spritzers are refreshing, but this has much more flavor. :-) Thanks for the comment.
"Summer Sippin and Snarfin Series?" Love it!!! Love sparkling wine ( saw your post on facebook and had to come visit for all the details). A splash of Grand Mariner, a splash of brandy....This is all good. Thanks for sharing. I am looking forward to enjoying your series.
Hi Velba, we have some nice drinks (and food recipes!) planned. :-) Thanks for the comment.
I love it when you post a cocktail for which I have all ingredients on hand! This reminds me a little bit of the French 75 cocktail, although I know there is a difference… I just can’t think what it is! Funny, I really don’t like a Mamosa, but I know I will love this. Thanks for sharing the recipe, look forward to some Summer Sippin’!
Hi David, we love French 75s! They contain gin and lemon -- such a great drink. As is this. :-) Thanks for the comment.
Maybe 20 years ago, on a Napa wine tour I remember someone showing how to hold a wine glass by the stem and say that if you hold it by the bowl, it's like "I'd rather be drinking a beer." Well little did the realize how popular stemless glassware would become! Like David, I have the ingredients and love the idea of a more sophisticated "mimosa"! Beautiful image as always and your twist is perfect!
Hi Inger, we like stemless champagne flutes because they DO warm the contents of the glass -- we tend to forget to pull our champagne before serving to allow it to come up to the proper temperature, so we just let our hands warm it up a bit. :-) Plus, we like the way they look! Thanks for the comment.
The cocktail sounds wonderful and I love the serving glass. Lovely
Sounds totally drinkworthy. And perfect for having more than one. After all, an open bottle of bubbles quickly loses its fizz!
Hi Judee, we love that glass too! :-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Abbe, gotta finish those open bottles. :-) Thanks for the comment.
Looks tasty and very refreshing. A nice summer cocktail.
It's clear, crisp and I bet aromatic too with the orange essence. Perfect for toasting during the summer holidays. Take Care
Hi MJ, it's extremely refreshing. And yummy. :-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Bobbi, the orange flavor and aroma is understated, but definitely enticing. :-) Thanks for the comment.
This sounds like a wonderful cocktail. Perfect for the summer months.
Hi Dawn, we love drinks made with sparkling wine! :-) Thanks for the comment.
When I was in Italy a week ago we drank quite a few aperol spritzer‘s. This looks like a nice one also. I have to try it.
Hi Anonymous, you do! :-) Thanks for the comment.
Looks great! What a beautiful summer cocktail.
If this doesn't say "festive,'' I don't know what does. A perfect Sunday brunch sip!
Hi B&S, isn't this pretty? Tasty, too. :-) Thanks for the comment.
Hi Carolyn, this really is nice for brunch. Or before dinner. :-) Thanks for the comment.
Oh, boy, I'm saving this one!! I know my book club would love it.
Hi Liz, this is a terrific book club drink! :-) Thanks for the comment.
I love sparkling wine based cocktails, so this is definitely for me. It looks beautiful and sounds delightful - elegant, light, and refreshing but with some character :)
Hi Ben, this drink definitely has character! :-) Thanks for the comment.
It looks absolutely amazing!
Hi Taruna, tastes that way, too. :-) Thanks for the comment.
What a great cocktail for June! It's definitely a mimosa upgrade.
Hi Lisa, much more interesting flavor than a Mimosa. :-) Thanks for the comment.
This is my kind of cocktail. I love bubbles, fruity, etc. And as always your presentation is beautiful. :-) ~Valentina
Hi Valentina, we an never resist bubbles in any form. :-) Thanks for the comment.
Sounds lovely! Already putting together a list of cocktails for Wimbledon.
Hi Amalia, this would be lovely for that! In addition to the traditional Pimm's Cup, of course. :-) Thanks for the comment.
I love any drink with Grand Marnier! This is so fun for summer!
Hi Ashley, it's a great drink! :-) Thanks for the comment.
We definitely have to try this cocktail, it really looks refreshing with those bubbles and it's citrus-y flavors. Those pictures capturing the bubbles in the glass are amazing, John!!
Hi Marcelle, the flavor of this is quite nice. :-) Thanks for the comment.
The only way to make sparkling wine better is to add more alcohol. I can't wait to try this!
Hi Laura, yup, alcohol with alcohol works for us. :-) Thanks for the comment.
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