This month was all about the bubbly; and, it was timely. It was hard not to focus on one of France’s most esteemed products without considering the violence that had just taken over Paris. Of course, our champagne-themed event was planned long before the recent events in Paris, but it gave us an opportunity to come together as friends, be thankful what we have, and share our heartache over the recent violence. Just a few moments of recollection of the recent events nearly brought many of us to tears.
At the same time, we used this HBN Cocktail Club event to also do something more than just learn about a craft cocktail. This month, we all brought new winter clothing items to donate to United Way of Salt Lake’s winter clothing drive. It is amazing to be friends with so many wonderful, willing, and thoughtful ladies. Thanks to everyone for providing coats, gloves, hats, and mittens for kids in our community who need them!
November’s HBN Cocktail Club took it old school and simple — and we learned all about champagne (what IS champagne and what isn’t), did an incredible and informative tasting, and enjoyed one of the most traditional old school cocktails out there: The Traditional Champagne Cocktail.
November Hostess: Megan
This month was Megan’s one year anniversary of joining Cocktail Club — so it was amazing that she was hosting. I have gotten to know Megan over the years, because she pretty much makes the hair of all of my girlfriends AMAZING. She is one professional, thoughtful, brilliant, strong woman, and I am so glad that our paths have crossed ways. The studying she did for this month’s cocktail club about champagne was intense and she blew everyone’s socks off with her stories and knowledge, not to mention dazzled us with information on all of the different brands of champagne, sparkling wine, cava, and prosecco she introduced us to. Than you, Megan, for such a lovely Sunday afternoon!
Before we can get to the cocktail, we have to have a little chat about champagne in general!
Take it away, Megan:
Types of champagne:
–Blanc de noir- white whine produced from black grapes
–Blanc de blanc-usually made entirely of Chardonnay grapes or pinot blanc grapes
–Rosé-most commonly made from adding a small amount of still Pinot Noir red wine to the cuvée
Champagne sweetness will vary based on types of grapes used, sugar, yeast, and the aging process used:
–Extra brut : driest, no sweetness
–Brut: (most popular)dry with a little sweetness
–Extra dry: slightly sweeter than brut, and surprisingly not as dry as extra brut or brut
–Demi-sec: usually paired with dessert as this is a very sweet wine
Types of Cava:
Cava is a sparkling wine made in Spain from a blend of native Spanish grapes. The Método Tradicional is a process similar to Champagne, but the wine produced cannot be called Champagne because it is made outside of France.
Prosecco is an italian sparkling white wine made from Glera grapes.
It is less expensive to make and is fermented in stainless steel tanks.
1 sugar cube
Lemon or orange twist
Soak the sugar cube in aromatic bitters (we used Peychaud’s) and drop into a champagne flute. Top with a luxury champagne or a sparkling wine, Garnish with a lemon or orange twist.
Lemon Twist Tool and Zester: $12.99
Categories: Cocktail Club