Ideal Wine: How to Make a Classic Champagne Cocktail

If you’re about to throw a dinner party for your friends, you’ll want to stick around. The Ideal Wine Company is about to tell you how to make a classic Champagne cocktail.

The perfect dinner party drink

Dinner parties are sophisticated occasions. They present you with a unique opportunity to go all out and really impress your nearest and dearest. You can show them what you’re made of the minute they step through the door by greeting them with cocktails. These heady concoctions give your guests a chance to mingle and catch up on local gossip before you serve the main course.

This is why it’s vital you find the perfect cocktail to start the night off right. May we suggest the classic Champagne cocktail? This timeless concoction is simple yet elegant; the perfect drink for special occasions.

What you’ll need

You won’t need to stretch your budget too far to create a mouth-watering classic Champagne cocktail. You’ll need one sugar cube, 2 dashes of bitters, 20 ml of Cognac (we suggest the Remy Martin XO Champagne Cognac) and enough luxury Champagne to top up a glass (the Dom Perignon 2000 would work fabulously for this).

The preparation method

You’ll also be glad to hear that the classic Champagne cocktail is incredibly easy to make. You can whip up a batch in a few minutes. All you have to do is:

  • Place the sugar cube on the spoon and soak it in the bitters.
  • Drop the cube into a Champagne flute and pour in the Cognac.
  • Top up the glass with your luxury Champagne.

Since we’re heading into summer, if you’re thinking of making a classic Champagne cocktail in the near future we suggest you do one more thing. Place a slice of lemon or lime on the rim of the glass to lend your creation an exotic Mediterranean vibe.

Wow your guests

Follow this guide and voila! You’ll have created a mouth-watering batch of classic Champagne cocktails that your guests are sure to love. These fabulous creations will turn your dinner party into the stuff of legend!

How old is Your Bottle of Cognac?

Enthusiasts around the world will tell you that the longer a Cognac has been left to mature, the better it tastes. Below, the Ideal Wine Company explains how you can find out the age of your bottle of luxury Cognac.

Aging is vital to the Cognac making process.

Last week the Ideal Wine Company explained how Cognac is made. Cognac is an appellation d’origine contrôlée. This means that there are certain rules that govern its production.

One of these rules is that Cognac must be left to age for at least one-two years. At this point the eaux de vie that has been made in the double distillation process is left to age in Limousin oak casks. This allows the eaux de vie’s colour and flavour to mature. The drink is moved to progressively older casks the longer it’s left to age.

Age classification system

Age is like a badge of honour in the Cognac industry. The sector uses an age classification system to let consumers know how long their Cognacs have been left to mature. The basic classification system is as follows:

  • VS: This is the most basic classification. It means “very special” and refers to Cognacs that have been aged for at least one-two years; the minimum requirement.


  • VSOP: This means “very special old pale” or “very superior old pale.” Cognacs with this designation have been allowed to mature in Limousin oak casks for at least four years.


  • XO: Also known as “extra old.” Cognacs that fall into this category have been let to age for a minimum of six years.


  • Hors d’âge: The French translation for “beyond age.” As the name suggests, hors d’âge is similar to XO but is often used to market Cognacs of higher quality. Other names for hors d’âge include Napoleon and Vieille Réserve; VR for short.

How old is your Ideal Wine Company Cognac?

Now you know how to determine the age of a Cognac, what does this mean for the luxury brandies you can buy from the Ideal Wine Company? We have three Cognacs on our product list right now. These are the Remy Martin XO Champagne Cognac, the Delamain Pale & Dry XO Grande Champagne Cognac and the Claude Vorin VR.

This means that when you buy a Cognac from the Ideal Wine Company, you can be sure that you’ve invested in a bottle that has been allowed to mature for at least six years. In other words, you’re in for a top quality tipple when you buy Cognac from the Ideal Wine Company!

How to Choose What Wine to Bring to a Dinner Party

Do you have a dinner party coming up and no idea which vintage to bring with you? If so read on, as this week the Ideal Wine Company explains how to choose what wine to bring to a dinner party.

Wine and dinner parties go hand in hand

Convention demands that when you’ve been invited to a dinner party you bring something with you as a thank you for your host. Beer is too cheap and low brow, Vodka is too reminiscent of those nights you spent at the local park when you were 17 and whiskey and brandy are too decadent.

Therefore most people choose to bring along a bottle of wine when they’re invited to attend a dinner party. Wine is luxurious, goes hand in hand with expertly prepared cuisine and is expensive enough not to make you look cheap.

Four tips for choosing what wine to bring to a dinner party

Yet there are so many wines out there; which do you choose? Which will make the right impression? Try these four tips to help you choose the right bottle of wine to bring the next time you’re invited to a dinner party…

  • Pair with food: Dinner parties centre around the dishes the host has chosen to serve for dinner. It’s seen as incredibly bad form to bring a bottle which clashes with every dish served. Find out which dishes the host has decided to make so you can ensure you pick a wine that complements the flavours of at least one.


  • Splash out: Whatever you do, don’t head down to Tesco and snag a bottle from their ‘special offer’ section the next time you’re invited to a dinner party. It’s the ultimate faux pas; it makes you look cheap. Show your appreciation for the effort the host has gone to by spending decent money on the wine you pick. You might, for example, want to bring a superb Bordeaux from the Ideal Wine Company.


  • Use what you know to your advantage: You can’t exactly ask the host what to bring, that’s just awkward. However you know them. You know what they like. Use your knowledge to your advantage and pick a bottle that’ll go down well with the host the next time you attend a dinner party.


  • Pick something you know: How can you expect other people to like a vintage that you don’t even know whether you like yourself? Pick a wine you’re already familiar with if you want to make sure you select a vintage that’ll go down a storm the next time you’re asked to attend a dinner party.

Think about what other people will enjoy

In other words there’s one trick that’s almost guaranteed to ensure that you’ll select the right wine to bring with you the next time you’re invited to attend a dinner party. Think about what other people will enjoy; do that and you won’t go far wrong.