Valentine’s Day just begs to be celebrated with something red and bubbly, right?
Enter one of my favorite cocktails—the classic French 75—but instead of using lemon juice, we infuse the drink with something to make it brilliant pinkish red—blood orange.
So pretty! And just as lovely to drink as the original, if not more so.
The classic French 75 is light and refreshing, and packs a little kick with gin. First on the scene a hundred years ago, it’s made with lemon juice, gin, sugar, and sparkling white wine.
One of the things that makes a French 75 work so well is the interplay of tart citrus with the gin, champagne, and simple syrup. Since we are swapping out the lemon juice in the classic recipe with blood orange, and blood oranges are more sweet than tart, I add a little lime juice to bring the drink more into a proper balance.
A few notes on the recipe. If you don’t have a cocktail shaker, you can use any sealable container, even a quart sized mason jar. I used a wide-mouthed plastic sports water bottle as my shaker.
Blood oranges tend to be rather pulpy, so it’s a good idea to strain the juice at least once.
For extra flavor, put a few strips of blood orange zest into the simple syrup once it comes to a boil.