Kir Royales are what you make for pre dinner cocktails when you want to add a little French class to your dinner party – or if you want to jazz up cheap champagne!! It’s a champagne cocktail made with champagne and creme de cassis, a sweet dark red blackcurrant liquor.
Serve with Gougeres for pre dinner cocktails, done the French way!
You’ll find this champagne cocktail as a pre dinner drink on the menu of bistros and restaurants all across France. It’s a terrific celebratory way to kick off a meal – fizzy, sparkling, sweet, and who can resist the colour!
From a practical perspective, it’s a great way to dress up economical champagne. The creme de cassis is sweet and has a concentrated blackcurrant flavour which will disguise even the cheapest of champagnes!
What goes in Kir Royale
- Creme de cassis is a sweet, dark red liquor made from blackcurrants. It’s $27 for a 700ml/24 oz bottle at Dan Murphy’s (large Australian liquor store); and
- Best champagne for Kir Royale – any champagne*, sparkling wine (brut) or Cava is ideal here. Just don’t get one that’s labelled (or described on the label) as SWEET, because the creme de cassis is sweet and together it will probably be too sweet.
* Technically, sparkling wines can only be called “champagne” if they are made in the Champagne region of France. They tend to be pricier. But the term “champagne” is used quite loosely in reference to both “real” Champagne as well as sparkling wine.
How to make Kir Royales
Creme de cassis first, then top it up with champers!
What to serve with Kir Royales
Suggested finger foods to serve with Kir Royales
If you’re having these as a pre dinner cocktail, you’d be right on theme serving them alongside Gougeres which are French cheese puffs. In fact, that’s exactly what we were served by our host when we stayed in a B&B in Burgundy called La Saura a couple of months ago! – Nagi x
Watch how to make it
Kir Royale (French champagne cocktail)
- 2 tsp Creme de cassis (blackcurrent liquor, Note 1)
- 185ml/ 3/4 cup champagne or sparkling wine (Note 2)
- Pour creme de cassis in a champagne glass, then top with Champagne and serve!
- In reality, you don't need to measure - just eyeball it by colour, take a sip and adjust to taste! Some people like it sweeter, with a deeper red. Some people like just a tiny hint of blackcurrent.
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