The long weekend isn’t over yet!!  In fact, long weekend Sunday nights are THE BEST because there’s still one more day!!  Yayy!  I had some fun last night with friends over for a fire-pit/BBQ.  The fashion might have been less “Saturday night chic” and more “camping chic” but the refreshments were delicious and the company was even better!  If you have long weekend Monday plans with family and friends, read on for a great crowd cocktail!

lemons!
The “French 75” started with fresh squeezed lemon juice!  I had to squeeze 16 using my food processor to get 2 cups of juice.

I’ve had plans to make the “French 75” since discovering the recipe on Pinterest!  Gin, Cointreau and champagne?  YUM!  The recipe comes from In Style cocktail recipes found here:

French 75

Serves 12

2¼ cups chilled gin
2 cups fresh lemon juice
1½ cups Cointreau
3 bottles (750 ml) chilled champagne
Lemon peel for garnish

In a pitcher half-filled with ice, combine gin, lemon juice and orange-flavored liqueur. Divide mixture among 12 flutes. Top with champagne and garnish with lemon peel.

Sounds great, right?  Notice anything???

THREE bottles to serve 12??  And that's just the top up.
I substituted Prosecco for champagne because I need to save my money for more scarves.
This is as bad a jack-in-the-box.
This is as bad as a jack-in-the-box but Randa didn’t seem to mind!

THREE bottles to serve 12??  And that’s just the top up?!?

I decided to pour the Proseco into the mix... because I don't have 12 champagne glasses.
I decided to pour the Prosecco into the mix… because I don’t have 12 champagne glasses.

It made a sizable batch of cocktails – enough to serve a crowd!

Yep, I dug out my giant Costco dispenser.
Yep, I dug out my giant Costco dispenser.  I’m sure this is what In Style had in mind.

For those of you familiar with the Costco dispenser, you can imagine just how much cocktail is in there – way more than 12 servings and all but 2 cups is straight booze.

Looks like lemonade, tastes like lemonade, but is mostly alcohol so, seriously, take caution.  Drink one or two max and don't plan to drive.
Looks like lemonade, tastes like lemonade, but is mostly alcohol so, seriously, take caution. Drink one or two max and don’t plan to drive.
Don’t let the spout fool you!  Pour slowly and drink slowly! And yes, I have enough left over to serve another crowd.

This is a tart cocktail.  I added some simple syrup to sweeten it up and make it more pleasing for me and my girls!

Spirited Thrifter serving spirits!
Spirited Thrifter serving spirits in my vintage floral sweater and grey scarf!  Eddie Bauer puffer vest is B.T. (Before Thrifting).
This girl didn't have any French 75, but she came close to knocking every glass over every 2 minutes.
This girl didn’t have any French 75, but she came close to knocking every glass over every 2 minutes.
The French 75 made a fine cocktail to sip by the fire.
The French 75 made a decent cocktail to sip by the fire.

So, here are my conclusions on the “French 75

  • Sub in any sparkling white that fits your budget.  I wish I had chosen a sparkling Moscato to make it a bit sweeter.
  • Add as much simple syrup as you and your girly-drink friends like.
  • Serves twelve SEVENTY FIVE, more or less depending if you’re with friends or family.  haha
  • The Costco dispenser is totally appropriate for a casual “crowd” gathering no matter what In Style suggests.
  • Go thrifting for 75 champagne flutes if you want to serve this all fancy-like as suggested.

The bottom line: the bubbles of the champagne/sparkling wine are enjoyable, but not a lot different from adding sparkling water or club soda to a wine punch.  Considering the effort, cost and taste of the French 75, I will stick with the Moscato lemonade recipe floating around Pinterest for my future crowd cocktail needs (and I substitute club soda for Sprite in that recipe).  Thanks anyway, In Style but I’m saving my Cointreau for classic margaritas!

Good friends will have a good time no matter the cocktail!  Love these ladies!
Good friends will have a good time no matter the cocktail! Love these ladies!

 

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