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If you've ever wondered about the French 75 Cocktail history, it was first poured in 1915 at a bar in Paris, a mixture of Champagne, gin, lemon juice and sugar. It was said to have the kick of a French 75mm field gun, thus the name.
A few years ago, Keith and I went to a craft cocktail bar in Seattle. We asked our server what we should order, with the caveat that it not be very sweet. "I don't know," she said, "I like my cocktails to taste like sugar."
I like my cocktails to taste like alcohol.
The good news is that the French 75 cocktail can go either way. If you're a sweet-cocktail person, add more Meyer Lemon Simple Syrup; if not, add less.
Just as in my homemade tonic water recipe, I prefer the zing of fresh citrus that's lost once you involve heat. So, instead of making a traditional simple syrup on the stove top, I whisked superfine sugar into fresh Meyer lemon juice and let it dissolve. With a vigorous whisk, sugar dissolves quickly in the acidic juice leaving you with a zesty-fresh and sweet syrup.
(If you love bubbly cocktails, you should also check out this Peach Bellini recipe. And if you're a rhubarb fan, this Rhubarb Cocktail is amazing.)
Meyer Lemon French 75
For the Meyer Lemon Simple Syrup
- Juice of 1 Meyer Lemon (about 3 tablespoons)
- 2 tablespoons superfine sugar
For 1 French 75 Cocktail
- 1 ounce Gin
- ½ ounce Meyer Lemon Simple Syrup
- 2 ounces Champagne
To make the Meyer Lemon Simple Syrup:
- In a small bowl, whisk Meyer lemon juice and sugar until sugar has dissolved. (Makes enough syrup for 4 cocktails)
To make one French 75 cocktail:
- Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add 1 ounce Gin and ½ ounce Meyer Lemon Simple Syrup. Shake well and strain into a Champagne glass and top with Champagne. Stir gently and serve.
I just made one of these, using your exact measures and proportions, only substituting drinkable, affordable, small-bottle prosecco for the champagne, and it’s a keeper. A smashing sweetish cocktail. The lemon chases the sugar down like a dachshund after a hare.
I have syrup left. Excuse me while I go make another.
Love it! Thanks, Vincent!
J. J. says
Can you recommend a champagne for this cocktail please?
Hi J.J.! I typically go for a sparkling wine (Champagne, Cava, prosecco, etc.) that is in a middle price range, i.e., good enough that I would drink it straight, but nothing fancy.
Karen (Back Road Journal) says
I don't like my cocktails sweet either and know I would enjoy this one.
Jen GoBlue! says
Thanks so much for this recipe. I'm attending a craft cocktail party next weekend where everyone needs to make a cocktail. After trying it tonight, this is the winner!
I also need to bring an appetizer to complement it. Any suggestions?
I love that, Jen! Sounds like a great party to me...
For the appetizer, I'd go with something salty / creamy / rich. The Crostini with Brie, Cherry Preserves and Arugula from this post would be nice or even just buttery popcorn with a generous sprinkle of truffle salt.
Oh! Or Feta and Lemon Crostini - fun to tie in the lemon and add a little kick. 🙂
Savory Spicerack says
LOL I love it and totally agree, "I like my cocktails to taste like alcohol" This looks so tasty and I am in love with Meyer lemon recipes right now. I went to my favorite specialty shop that sells lovely olive oils, balsamic vinegars, etc. and they just put out a meyer lemon infused olive oil! I grabbed two! Pinning this beautiful drink for later!
ken whitley says
I haven't tried this drink, yet !! But, surely I will. I am now logged on to pinchandswirl. And, like all Marissa, I think you are beautiful. Bless you.
Mon Petit Four (@byMonPetitFour) says
I love the way you think, Marissa! 😉 I don't like my cocktails too sweet either. This recipe sounds and looks absolutely fantastic! I'm tempted to go mix up the drink right now, but I'll try to wait until I have a couple of friends over so I'm not drinking alone 😉 Also, I love the photography - gorgeous!
Thank you so much, Beeta! And, yes, it's definitely one of those celebration-type cocktails to enjoy with friends!
Helen @ Scrummy Lane says
Ooh ... wish I'd checked out this recipe yesterday! Looks beautiful, Marissa!
Happy New Year! May 2016 be filled with lots of happiness ... and Meyer lemon french 75s!
Thank you, Helen! And Happy New Year to you... 🙂
I love all my drinks to taste boozy! I love champagne cocktails and this one sounds so refreshing and tasty! Can't wait to make it tonight. It sounds like a great brunch drink too 🙂
I like the way you think, Maggie! 😉
oh mon Diue! Gin and citrus are well loved in our home. A refreshing cocktail is perfect this time of year. With everyone cranking up the heat and the heavy holiday food, a light fizzy drink is what we all need.
I agree, Annie! Thank you.
Holly | Beyond Kimcheeh says
Wow, I had to stare at your beautiful photo for a moment at first. Then, it made me feel thirsty and I needed a glass of cold drinks just like yours. Lovely!
haha, thank you! 🙂
shashi at runninsrilankan says
Gorgeous photos Marissa! And an absolutely refreshing drink!
Thank you, sweet Shashi! 🙂
Yum, this is my kind of cocktail! And love the photo!
Thanks, Sabrina! xo
Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella says
Hehe I must admit that I like a mix of refreshing and sweet for my cocktails so this sounds like it would be the perfect choice! A very Merry Christmas to you and Keith Marissa! I hope you have a wonderful one! 😀
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and Mr. NQN. xoxo
Dorothy Dunton says
Hi Marissa! I totally agree, I like my cocktails to taste like alcohol! If I want sweet I'll have dessert. This sounds so refreshing! Enjoy your holiday!
Exactly! 🙂 Thanks so much, Dorothy.