Go for the gold this New Year’s Eve. Infused simple syrups, fresh fruit juices, zests and candied garnishes of this champagne cocktail bring a flavorful twist to the biggest toast of the year. Karen Chu, owner of the popular Grand Cru Wine Bar & Boutique on Fort Worth’s trendy Magnolia Avenue, likes incorporating herbal flavors with fruit to her bubbly. “It adds another dimension and complexity,” she says. Any brut will do, but Chu prefers Blanc de Blancs for its bright, slightly acidic bite. “Unless you like really sweet cocktails, I would stay away from demi sec, sec, moscato d’asti, and even prosecco,” she adds. Try her Ginger-Pear Sparkler recipe, made especially festive with a dusting of edible gold flakes.
• 1 1/2 tablespoons Ginger-Sage Simple Syrup (recipe follows)
• 1 1/2 tablespoons pear juice (Grand Cru uses R.W. Knudsen
Family brand organic pear juice)
• 3 ounces champagne or sparkling wine, such as Mumm
Napa Blanc de Blancs
Add syrup, juice and champagne into a coupe glass. Stir lightly to mix. Garnish with paper-thin pear slices, candied ginger curls or edible gold flakes, if desired.
Ginger-Sage Simple Syrup
Makes 1 cup
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 1/2 cup water
• 10 fresh sage leaves
• 1 small piece fresh ginger, sliced into 1/8-inch rounds
1. Mix together all ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat. Stir, cover and let steep for at least 30 minutes.
2. Smash ginger pieces with a fork to release more flavor. Place in refrigerator until cold and keep chilled. May be made a day ahead.
— 1257 W. Magnolia Ave., Fort Worth, 817-923-1717, www.grandcrumagnolia.com