You know what’s fun? Drinking in the morning. Now, we don’t mean “a shot of tequila before work” or anything like that….(or do we?). There is something illicit about drinking a mimosa or a bloody mary with your weekend brunch at any point before the 5:00 p.m. happy hour curtain call.
There are only a few wines and spirits that lend themselves to acceptable imbibing before cocktail hour and luckily for me, one of those things happens to be bubbles-based. If I had it my way, champagne would be a food group.
Next time you find yourself in charge of the libations at a brunch party, be it a bridal shower or a baby shower, a bachelorette party or simply a celebration for the fact that it’s Saturday, make a batch of a simple cocktail that will feel elegant and please guests of all levels of partying.
If you’ve never experienced a blood orange, you’ll notice that it looks pretty much like a regular orange until you slice into it — and then you’ll see its crimson, almost-blood-colored flesh.
The distinctive dark flesh color is due to the presence an antioxidant uncommon in citrus fruits. While all oranges are likely of hybrid origin between the pomelo and the tangerine, blood oranges originated as a mutation of the sweet orange.
How’s that for science?
While blood orange juice may be somewhat tart, other kinds are sweet. The oranges can be used to make marmalade, salads, infused olive oils, or in baking….but we prefer to cut to the chase and use them in our cocktails.
- ½ cup fresh blood orange juice
- ½ cup Cointreau or other orange liqueur
- 1 750-ml bottle chilled Champagne or sparkling wine
- In a medium pitcher, stir juice and Cointreau; cover and chill until cold. Divide among Champagne coupes; top with Champagne.
Photo: Leigh Loftus