A simple and sleek New Year’s Eve Cocktail for a crowd
The Saffron Fleurtation is a variation on a cocktail recipe created by Champagne Perrier Joüet. They kindly shared it with me me for my first book, Fork Me, Spoon Me: the sensual cookbook. But with the help of a friend who is experienced in cooking with saffron, I refined the cocktail recipe to give it a unique, saffron punch. Without question, it’s my favorite New Year’s Eve cocktail.
So what makes this drink special enough to have it in hand as you welcome in a new year? For starters, it’s a luxurious drink. After all, this cocktail incorporate one of the world’s most luxurious–i.e. expensive–ingredients, saffron.
A smart cocktail recipe for parties
In addition, this Champagne cocktail’s simplicity makes it a smart choice for a party host. It calls for no muddling or shaking, no whipping of eggs or shaving of ice. In fact, it only calls for those two aforementioned ingredients, saffron and Champagne. And that brings me to what made this drink recipe a headliner in my aphrodisiac cookbook. Both saffron and Champagne are among the world’s most legendary aphrodisiacs. (You can learn more about the aphrodisiac history of saffron and Champagne in my Dictionary of Aphrodisiac Foods.)
The trick to infusing the Champagne with the right balance of spice is to toast the saffron in advance. Once it becomes brittle, you can grind it to a fine powder, to be sprinkled judiciously into the bottom of each Champagne flute. The toasted, crushed spice brings a robust flavor and golden hue to any bottle of bubbly, making it both beautiful for toasting and delicious with a meal.
Choose the right Champagne for your cocktail
Of course, Champagne Perrier Joüet recommends making this drink with their vintage Belle Epoque Champagne. (The one sold in the flowered bottle.) But the drink works beautifully with most Brut-style Champagnes. (If you’re watching your budget, you can also try this New Year’s Eve Cocktail with a Brut Cava or any Brut sparkling wine made in the méthode champenoise, also called the traditional method.)
This simple and very aphrodisiac cocktail comes from Amy Reiley's cookbook, Fork Me, Spoon Me: the sensual cookbook. It combines the savory scent and golden hue of saffron with the effervescence of Brut Champagne for the easiest cocktail around!
- 1 bottle Brut Champagne or Sparkling Wine
- 20 saffron threads
- In a small pan, toast the saffron over medium heat until it just starts to release fragrance, about one minute. (No NOT overcook.)
- Crush the saffron threads then sprinkle a pinch into each of two Champagne flutes.
- Top with Champagne and toast to the art of flirtation.
- Drain and repeat.
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