Photo by Maxime Iattoni
Who needs a holiday like Mother’s Day or bridal shower celebration as an excuse to pop a bottle of bubbly with a delicious brunch? A flute of champagne is an elegant way to welcome your favorite returning guests or even toast a honeymooning couple.
Champagne brunch, often reserved for those special occasions or rare celebrations, can actually become a fantastic regular menu feature for your bed and breakfast. During peak season, when your rooms are bursting with favorite guests, thank your amazing visitors with a little special twist to the traditional breakfast.
The perfect compliment to your gourmet, gorgeously served breakfast entrée should be something as elegant as a glass of your favorite champagne. Or maybe you want to enhance that sparkling wine even further by playing mixologist, conjuring up a citrusy Mimosa or other fruity punch.
If you’re thinking you don’t have time to worry about selecting good champagne, or don’t have time to create recipes for a new mixed breakfast beverage, we are here to help with tips, recipes, inspiration, recommendations and more.
First things first, let’s talk about champagne options. If you don’t already have a favorite economical champagne label in mind, there are some great new options on the shelves.
Henri’s Reserve is an online champagne boutique, introducing connoisseurs to an array of artisanal bubbly selections. Henri becomes your own sommelier, guiding you through the website, to your perfect bottle, or even case, of champagne delights from the small vineyards of France. Bottles range in price beginning at $40.
The champagne sipping staff at The Stir put their tastebuds to the test and critiqued the best bottles under $25. Popular names on the list included Korbel, Yellow Tail, and several others.
For even more assistance selecting bottles to add to your collection, apart from questioning your local sommelier, About.com has established a great online resource.
As a quick refresher course on champagne, here are some tips that could prove helpful when serving up the bubbly.
Planning and Serving Champagne and Sparkling Wine
- One bottle of champagne will give five or six glasses.
- Champagne should be stored in a cool dark place.
- Champagne is best drunk chilled but never iced. The younger and livelier the champagne, the cooler it should be served. Over-chilling will mean the champagne is too cold to release its aromas and flavors.
- Open champagne bottles carefully – the corks are under great pressure and could be dangerous. Grip the bottle firmly (perhaps using a tea towel) and ease the cork out gently, twisting the bottle one-way while turning the cork in the other direction. Aim for a quiet ‘hissss’ when the cork comes out, not a Grand Prix winner’s explosion!
- To appreciate a champagne wine fully you must give it the glass it deserves. Serve in tall, thin, plain flutes so you can see the pretty streams of bubbles rising through the liquid. The ideal shape is a tulip, the champagne saucer is one to avoid as the aromas and bubbles have too much space and are soon lost into the air.
If you are serving champagne with your breakfast and you want to add your own signature B&B twist (and make those bottles of bubbly go a little further), we have a bevy of beverage recipes. For even more recipe inspiration, check out Pinterest. You can even discover champagne-laced recipes on websites like FoodGawker (Mimosa Truffles and Blueberry Bellini’s anyone?) and Yummly.
The first batch of ideas to create the perfect sparkling glass were found at Saveur.com.
The most familiar sparkling cocktail for morning is likely the Mimosa, a simple mix of orange juice and sparkling wine. But if you’re looking to drink something a little different with your eggs Benedict, there’s an endless array of possibilities to be made with a bottle of sparkling wine and a bit of creative mixology. Here are ten of our favorite combinations:
1. Add a splash of pomegranate liqueur (like Pama); garnish with mint.
2. Add a bit of amaretto and a good amount of pear juice.
3. Soak a sugar cube in bitters then drop it in a full glass of bubbly.
4. Mix in a spoonful of coconut cream.
5. Add a dash of grenadine; garnish with freshly ground pepper.
6. Stir in a splash of elderflower liqueur; garnish with a large lemon twist.
7. Muddle a handful of blueberries and basil in a glass, add bubbly.
8. Top with a few fresh or frozen raspberries, and add a scoop of raspberry sorbet, if you like.
9. Add a dash of Campari or Aperol; garnish with an orange twist.
10. Mix with mango juice; garnish with a lime twist.
The following recipes were gathered from MarthaStewart.com.
Menning Mimosa Recipe
6 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons orange flavored liqueur, such as Grand Marnier
Fresh mint leaf
In a Champagne flute, mix together orange juice, lemon juice, and liqueur. Fill with Prosecco. Garnish with mint leaf and serve immediately.
Pear and Cranberry Bellini
Yield Serves 8
1 cup pear nectar
1 cup cranberry juice cocktail
1 bottle Prosecco or other dry sparkling white wine
In a small pitcher or large liquid measuring cup, combine pear nectar and cranberry juice cocktail. Pour 1/4 cup juice mixture into each of eight champagne glasses.
Dividing evenly, top with Prosecco or other dry sparkling white wine.
5 grapefruits, a mix of ruby red and white
5 oranges, a mix of blood and navel
6 Candied Grapefruit Bowls
1/2 bottle Champagne, chilled
Using a sharp knife, cut off tops and bottoms of grapefruits and oranges. Cut away peel, pith, and outer membranes; cut fruit segments from membranes, collecting juice and segments in bowl. Squeeze juice from membranes before discarding.
Drain grapefruit and orange segments, reserving juice. Place each candied grapefruit bowl in a glass; fill with citrus segments. Pour champagne over each; garnish with grapefruit chips. Serve reserved juice in glasses with breakfast.