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Craig's Champagne Cocktail

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“A rich and lethal mix. Served at Christmas (or Thanksgiving) fifteen minutes before the presents are distributed, and topped up carefully as presents are opened, will calm the most incompatible family members and allow you to concentrate on cooking the meal - if you still can! Experienced practitioners carefully avoid mixing the liqueur with the sparkling wine as they drink, leaving the ones they want to sedate to get a FULL strength top-up....! It took me 4 years of sampling this at our neighbour's parties (he is the Criag in the title) to learn to stay sober enough to note the recipe...the first time my wife was exposed to this, she was wheeled back down their garden in their wheelbarrow at the end of the party!”

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 white sugar cube
  • 1 slice fresh orange
  • 1 tablespoon orange liqueur (Grand Marnier or similar, or Curacao if you want a drier mix)
  • 1 glass champagne or 1 glass dry sparkling wine
  • 3 drops Angostura bitters


  1. Place the sugar cube in a wide glass ( brandy glass is ideal).
  2. Drip the bitters onto the sugar.
  3. Pour the orange liqueur around the sugar.
  4. Place the slice of orange on top of the sugar.
  5. Gently dribble the champagne over the orange slice so that a clear layer is visible between the liqueur and the wine.
  6. Drink - it gets subtly more lethal as you go down the glass.
  7. The diameter of the glass needs to match the diameter of the orange slice for best layering effect.

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