To me, Brunch feels incomplete without eggs benedict and some delicious pancakes. And then, there are also the drinks. When it comes to those, there are only a few that instantly pop up in my mind. And the Mimosa is one of them, weirdly right before the Bloody Mary. Two cocktails that could not be more different. Opposed to the spiciness of the famous tomato cocktail, a Mimosa is a delicious mix of Champagne and freshly squeezed orange juice.
Interestingly, the Buck’s Fizz cocktail shares the exact same ingredients, just with different measurements. So it is of utmost importance to pay attention to how much Champagne you use in relation to orange juice. Also, when you add orange liqueur like Cointreau to the mix, you get a Grand Mimosa.
But let’s start and have a closer look at the classic recipe and who invented it.
History of the Mimosa cocktail
As ever so often, there is an ongoing debate about the origin of the cocktail. But the majority sees Frank Meier as the inventor of the Mimosa cocktail. And given that he was also the first-ever to include the recipe in a cocktail book, that story has quite some substance.
Most likely, Meier invented the drink in the mid-1920s when he was bartending at the bar Hemingway, located in the Ritz Carlton hotel in Paris. And Frank Meier is no stranger in the history of mixology. His name often gets mentioned in stories about cocktail classics like the Bee’s Knees cocktail.
In 1936 he published the Mimosa recipe in his book The Artistry of Mixing Drinks. The drink came with two names, “Champagne Orange” and “Mimosa”. The latter is a reference to the yellow-flowered plant called Mimosa (Acacia dealbata). According to Meier, the drink should be served in a wineglass with an ice cube.
To make a Mimosa the Meier way, use the juice of half an orange and pour it into the wine glass filled with an ice cube(s). Top off with Champagne and stir quickly and gently. But even though it is the original way of preparation, there are some techniques to improve the process, which I will explain a little later.
How to make the best Mimosas
The ingredients are limited. You only need freshly squeezed orange juice and Champagne. But still, some things can go wrong when mixing a Mimose, and they will ruin your drink. -Most of them are related to losing the bubbles of your Champagne.
That is why the first important thing to do is to choose suitable glassware. And this means not to use a wine glass, instead opt for a Champagne flute. The reason for this is simple: Champagne flutes are designed to preserve the carbonation of your Champagne. However, if you do not have one, you can use a wine glass instead as it is the next best option.
The second important thing is to chill everything. A Mimosa will fall flat as soon as the temperature rises. And the same thing will happen if you add ice cubes. Therefore, chill your Champagne flutes in the freezer to have them ice-cold once you need them. Naturally, your Champagne should be ice cold, too, but also make sure you cool down your orange juice after squeezing it. By that, you make sure that all ingredients contribute to preserving the bubbles in your Champagne.
Another pro tip is to double-strain your orange juice. You certainly don’t want fruit pulp in this elegant drink. So make sure that you carefully strain it before you let it chill.
And although I mentioned it before, I cannot emphasize it enough: don’t use cubes. I know there’s a trend to put ice cubes in sparkling wine and Prosecco, but the downside of doing this is that the drinks fall flat way faster than usual. And since we are dealing with a delicate ingredient like Champagne, you definitely want to avoid that.
Other Champagne cocktails
Earlier, I mentioned two closely related drinks, the Buck’s Fizz and the Grand Mimosa. But there are way more fabulous and classic Champagne cocktails out there. The most obvious is probably the Champagne cocktail, a drink consisting of Champagne, sugar, and Angostura bitters.
Other classics made with Champagne are the French 75, a gin-based cocktail balanced with syrup, lemon juice, and sparkling Champagne, and the Kir Royale.
- 3 oz Brut Champagne (chilled)
- 3 oz Fresh orange juice (chilled)
- 1 Orange slice (garnish)
- Only use ice-cold ingredients and chilled Champagne flutes.
- Pour half the Champagne in a flute, add orange juice, and top with the rest of the Champagne.3 oz Brut Champagne, 3 oz Fresh orange juice
- Optionally garnish with a thin slice of orange in the glass.1 Orange slice