The name derives from a weapon used in WWI, the 75mm Howitzer artillery gun. This drink is said to be so named for the kick you got from the combination of ingredients which was similar to being shot by the Howitzer.
As with many great cocktails, there are varying stories as to the the creator and the ingredients of this timeless tipple:
- Was it Harry MacElhone in 1915 at Harry’s New York Bar in Paris, made with gin?
- Was it WWI flying ace Raoul Lufbery, looking for a kick to his favorite champagne and adding cognac?
- Was it Arnaud at Arnaud’s French 75 in New Orleans? (possibly the best place to enjoy this classic cocktail)
- Is it made with vodka? (or would that be the French 76?)
- Is it made with a sugar cube doused with Angostura bitters, the glass then filled with crushed ice, cognac and topped with champagne?
Here is one recipe we’ve found and enjoy…
1.5 oz. Korbel California Brandy
1 oz. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. simple syrup
Float Korbel Extra Dry Champagne
Combine Korbel California Brandy, simple syrup and fresh lemon juice in shaker. Add ice and shake until chilled. Strain into champagne flute. Float Korbel Extra Dry Champagne. Garnish with a lemon curl.
Regardless of which interpretation you prefer, and whether you are celebrating a delayed New Year or any other toast worthy event, try a French 75. If you have another favorite or classic tipple you rather enjoy, feel free to leave a comment in the section below or find us on Facebook or Twitter.
Cheers! Here’s to a happy, healthy and prosperous 2011.
[Answer to todays wine quiz question: FALSE – Wine should be poured from the right to avoid reaching over the guest’s plate.]