how to make a french 75

How to Make a French 75: Impress Your Guests with a Timeless Classic

French 75 Cocktail: Impress Your Guests with a Timeless Classic

 how to make a french 75

Everything You Need to Know About the French 75

Imagine the scene: you've meticulously planned a gathering for your loved ones. The hors d'oeuvres are perfectly arranged, the music sets a warm ambiance, and laughter fills the air. As the night progresses, you decide to elevate the experience further. You confidently stride behind the bar cart, whip out a cocktail shaker, and moments later, present your guests with a creation that garners impressed murmurs and requests for the recipe. This, my friend, is the magic of the French 75 – a sophisticated yet deceptively simple drink that's guaranteed to leave a lasting impression.

The French 75 Cocktail 

Like many classic drinks, the French 75's origin is mured in mystery and debate. While some accounts trace its birth to World War I France, with the drink potentially being named after the powerful 75-millimeter field guns, there's no definitive proof. Drinks historian David Wondrich sheds some light on a documented appearance, noting that the recipe first appeared in 1927 at the height of Prohibition in a book called "Here's How" published by a New York humor magazine. The cocktail gained further recognition just a few years later in 1930 when it was included in Harry Craddock's influential "The Savoy Cocktail Book." This inclusion in a respected bartender's manual is believed to have solidified the French 75's spread in bars and homes around the world.

Often described as a celebration in a glass, the French 75 boasts a delightful balance of sweet, tart, and bubbly flavors. But what exactly is a French 75, and how can you master this impressive cocktail for your next gathering? Dive in, and discover the secrets to crafting this timeless drink!

French 75 Recipe (Ingredients)

 how to make a french 75

The beauty of the French 75 lies in its minimalist approach. Here's what you'll need:

  • 1 ounce Gin (dry gin is the most common choice, but feel free to experiment!)

  • ½ ounce Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice

  • ½ ounce Simple Syrup (you can buy this pre-made or create your own by dissolving equal parts sugar and water)

  • 2-3 ounces Chilled Brut Champagne (or dry sparkling wine like cava or prosecco)

  • Lemon Twist (for garnish)

Optional: For a richer flavor profile, you can substitute the gin with ½ ounce cognac.

How to Make a French 75

  1. Chill your glassware. For an authentic presentation, use a chilled Champagne flute. Simply pop your flutes in the freezer for 15-20 minutes before starting.

  2. Prepare your cocktail shaker. Fill it with ice. This ensures your drink is beautifully chilled by the time you serve it.

  3. Combine the gin, lemon juice, and simple syrup in the shaker. Freshly squeezed lemon juice adds a zing that store-bought varieties just can't replicate.

  4. Shake vigorously for 15-20 seconds. The goal is to achieve a good froth at the top of the shaker and ensure all the ingredients are perfectly combined and chilled.

  5. Strain the mixture into your chilled Champagne flute.

  6. Top with chilled Champagne. Gently pour the Champagne down the side of the flute to avoid disturbing the froth.

  7. Express the lemon oils over the drink. Hold the lemon twist (cut a long, thin strip of lemon peel) over the glass and gently squeeze the oils to release their aroma. Then, garnish the drink by placing the lemon twist in the flute.


how to make a french 75

The French 75 offers a surprising amount of room for creativity. Here are a few variations to explore:

  • French 76: Substitute the gin with ½ ounce cognac for a richer taste.

  • Royal French 75: Add a few raspberries to the shaker for a delightful burst of sweetness and color.

  • Elderflower French 75: Replace the simple syrup with elderflower liqueur for a floral twist.

Remember, these are just a starting point! Experiment with different base spirits, fruits, and liqueurs to create your own signature French 75 variation.

Why Craft Cocktails at Home?

While there's certainly a charm to visiting a cocktail bar, there are numerous benefits to creating these drinks at home. First and foremost, it allows you to control the quality of the ingredients. By using premium liquors and fresh juices, you can ensure your French 75 is a masterpiece in every sip. Secondly, crafting cocktails at home is a fantastic way to impress your guests. The act of creating a delicious drink from scratch demonstrates thoughtfulness and adds a personal touch to your gatherings.

how to make a french 75

Finally, mastering classic cocktails like the French 75 is a gateway to further exploration in the world of mixology. Resources like Barprints' Mixology Mastery: Online Bartending Course can equip you with the knowledge and techniques to create an entire repertoire of impressive drinks. So ditch the bar tab, unleash your inner bartender, and embark on a journey of crafting memorable cocktail experiences for yourself and your loved ones.

The French 75, with its timeless elegance and surprising ease of preparation, is the perfect drink to kickstart your home bartending adventures.

how to make a french 75