Boy, do I have a treat for you today…times two!
In honor of it being my Bachelorette Party weekend, today I thought it would be fun to share two fun ways to make Pink Champagne Cocktails. Pink + champagne = two of my favorite things, so of course I wanted to give you TWO ways to enjoy them! (And it’s no secret that sparkling wine cocktails are my jam, as evidenced by Exhibits A, B and C.)
But before I get to these delicious cocktails, I just have to say that I am soooo excited to be on the road and headed to beautiful, sunny Palm Springs with thirteen of my closest gal pals to soak up the sun and celebrate some of my last days of “single-dom.” I know that Bachelorette Parties are supposed to be wild and racy, but let’s be real here, I’m 31 years old (most of my friends are around that age as well) so I think what we are all most looking forward to is a weekend of relaxing and enjoying some quality time together. I feel so honored that some of my gals are coming from faraway lands such as Hawaii, Nebraska and Texas just to celebrate with me! I really am so lucky to have such amazing ladies in my life 🙂
So, enough of the mushy stuff, something I know we will absolutely be doing this weekend is enjoying plenty of these Pink Champagne Cocktails. Honestly, if asked, I really wouldn’t be able to choose my favorite between the two. They are just so different!
For the first Pink Champagne Cocktail, I whipped up a batch of Strawberry-Rhubarb Syrup very closely based off of this one that my gal Deb made over at Smitten Kitchen (love her stuff, and if you aren’t already following her you most definitely should be), but of course I had to throw in my own little twist. I also made a slightly smaller batch since I knew I’d be making a second, different (but just as festive) Pink Champagne Cocktail as well.
[Also, side note, I definitely saved all of the strawberry and rhubarb “mush” that was leftover after straining with all intentions of scooping it all over French Vanilla ice cream. I haven’t gotten to it yet, but I’ll let you know how that goes.]
The secret ingredient I added to the already-delicious syrup recipe from Smitten Kitchen was a few dashes of rosewater. Amazing! This added a lovely hint of floral to an already incredibly tasty concoction. And if you don’t know where to find rosewater, allow me to help you out and give you this handy-dandy link to Amazon. Problem –> solved.
For the second Pink Champagne Cocktail, I was dreaming up some sort of pink lemonade version. And what do you know, when I stepped into Trader Joe’s to do my weekly blog shopping, they had none other than PINK lemons. That’s right. They look very similar to regular lemons on the outside, but once you cut into them the flesh (and juice) have a light pinkish-orange hue. Did you know these even existed? According to the super-knowledgeable TJ’s checker, pink lemons are actually MORE common throughout the world than what we know as the standard yellow lemons. Apparently they’re just not THAT common in the U.S. We learn something new every day, don’t we? Thank you for that lovely nugget, Trader Joe’s checkout man.
So for this Pink Champagne Cocktail, I basically made a Pink Lemon Simple Syrup. Now, if you can’t find above-mentioned pink lemons, have no fear. The pink lemon juice didn’t end up coloring my simple syrup THAT much, so I added some of the syrup from a jar of Morello cherries. This worked beautifully, but if you have trouble finding the Morello cherries in syrup, you could easily use store-bought cherry juice or even pomegranate juice. Just be sure to taste the syrup and make sure it has the proper amount of sweetness (adding more sugar if needed) as the juices will undoubtedly be more tart than Morello cherry syrup.
That’s it in a nutshell! Be sure to leave time to allow both syrups to cool to at least room temperature, and for even tastier results, give them some time to chill in the refrigerator before adding to your sparkling wine. I found that a good ratio was about 2 ounces of syrup to 4-6 ounces of sparkling wine, but feel free to play around with that and adjust the ratio to your (or your guests’) tastes.
Who’s ready for a cocktail?
- ½ pound strawberries hulled and sliced in half
- ½ pound rhubarb cut into one-inch pieces
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon rosewater
- Juice of ½ a lemon
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 2/3 cup pink lemon juice or regular lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon Morello cherry syrup or cherry or pomegranate juice*
- Sparkling wine
- Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Allow to cook for 10-15 minutes, or until fruit is cooked and mushy and juices have released. Allow to cool slightly and then strain through a sieve. Allow to cool completely and then keep in a glass container in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
- Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, turn heat down to a simmer and cook until sugar is dissolved, about 5-10 minutes. Turn off heat and stir in Morello cherry syrup. Allow to cool completely and then keep in a glass container in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
- Pour two ounces of either syrup into a champagne flute. Slowly top off with sparkling wine. It’s very important that you add this slowly. If you add it too quickly, the glass will easily overflow and you know we can’t have you losing any of this cocktail to the kitchen floor.
Cheers to the weekend!