A leisurely brunch deserves delicious bubbly cocktails. Want to treat your guests to a mimosa or two?
This lively drink is often pitted against the other brunch favorite, the Bloody Mary. It’s also a favorite at weddings and is served on occasions like Christmas, Mother’s Day, and Easter.
What makes the mimosa such a crowd-pleaser? How do you make the perfect mimosa?
In this article, we’ll look at how to make the best mimosa ever, tips on picking the best wine to make it, how to serve the mimosa, and the best wines to use.
This Article Contains
(Click on a link below to jump to a specific section)
- What is a Mimosa?
- The Best Mimosa Recipe
- Tips to Make the Perfect Mimosa
- How to Choose a Sparkling Wine for a Mimosa
- Serving Mimosas
- Food to Serve with Mimosas
- Some Mimosa Fun Facts
- A Few More Easy Wine-based Cocktail Ideas
- Delicious Sparkling Wines for a Mimosa
- Bollinger Special Cuvee Brut
- Delamotte Blanc de Blancs Brut
- Bisol Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Cartizze DeOCG 2015
- Bouvet-Ladubay Saumur Saphir Brut 2015
- Agusti Torello Mata Kripta Gran Reserva Cava 2011
- Freixenet Cordon Negro Gran Seleccion Brut Cava
- Jacob's Creek Chardonnay - Pinot Noir Brut Cuvee
- Korbel Cellars California Champagne Brut
What is a Mimosa?
The mimosa is a champagne cocktail made of tangy orange juice boosted by delicious Champagne or any sparkling white wine.
The recipe to make this brunch cocktail is pretty straightforward, light on alcohol, and is absolutely delicious!
The Best Mimosa Recipe
Here’s our favorite mimosa recipe!
Here are some tips to make sure you get your mimosa just right!
Tips to Make the Perfect Mimosa
Firstly, a classic mimosa has just two ingredients, so you should strive for good quality in those ingredients.
Even with just two ingredients in the mimosa recipe, there are some other things you should pay attention to.
1. Freshly squeezed orange juice rules!
Use freshly squeezed orange juice when possible as it's the most flavorful and nutritious. 1 cup of juice needs about 3 oranges, just to give you a gauge to follow.
Strain out the pulp from your cold, fresh squeezed orange juice for a smooth bubbly cocktail. The bubbles will make the pulp rise to the surface. If you prefer to buy from a shop, get high-quality, pulp-free orange juice. Don’t use orange concentrate.
2. Finding the perfect ratio
The truth is, there’s no perfect ratio — it’s up to you. However, you can start with the classic mimosa recipe ratio, which requires equal parts of sparkling wine to orange juice. Then adjust from there depending on your taste.
3. Always add the sparkling wine first
There are two reasons for this. The first is to preserve some of the carbonation. Pour the wine slowly to minimize the foam.
The second reason is to prevent a sticky mess on the top of the glass if the champagne accidentally overflows! Pouring the sparkling wine first makes it much easier to control the bubbles.
4. Don’t stir
When you pour the orange juice, the bubbles in the wine will help to mix this drink on its own, so you don’t need to stir. Stirring will cause more bubbles to disappear and flatten the drink.
5. Ice is a no-no
The ice will melt, diluting the drink, so avoid adding any ice. Just chill the orange juice and sparkling wine before mixing, and it’ll be fine.
6. There’s a non-alcoholic version too!
Use a non-alcoholic sparkling grape juice as a substitute for the wine.
C. Mimosa variations
Here are some ingredients you can add to spice up your mimosa - on top of the basic sparkling wine plus orange juice recipe.
- Make it a Russian Mimosa: Add vodka for a Russian twist.
- Make it a French one: Add a tablespoon of Chambord for a French touch.
- Go for blood: Blood orange juice, that is! This will give your drink a reddish hue and add some pineapple juice for a Blood Orange Mimosa. It could be great for Halloween.
- Extra fruity: Add a fruit juice like cranberry or pomegranate juice, or both.
- Create a gradient: Pour Grenadine slowly along the side of the glass. It’ll pool at the bottom to create a lovely sunrise gradient effect.
- Make a Tequila Sunrise Mimosa: Add some tequila to your Grenadine-gradated mimosa.
- Switch-up the sparkling wine color: Pink champagne will give you a pinkish mimosa, and red, fizzy Lambrusco makes it, well, red.
- Add apple cider: The apple cider mimosa is another popular variation. Apple cider boosts the fizz in the bubbly and adds a delicious apple taste.
- Use a puree: Add strawberry or peach puree to the bottom of the glass before pouring the liquids.
Which sparkling wine is the best for mimosas?
How to Choose a Sparkling Wine for a Mimosa
If you’re using Champagne, you don’t need an expensive one.
Save the expensive sparkling wines to be enjoyed on their own, as mixing with orange juice will dilute most of the exotic flavors anyway!
The easiest option is an Italian Prosecco or a Spanish Cava, as these are delicious, dry, and reasonably priced. But, remember not to use anything too cheap.
Also, if you do plan to use Champagne, know that Champagne has many levels of sweetness. A Brut Champagne, which is Dry to Bone Dry, should work fine for a mimosa.
So, what’s the best way to serve your mimosa?
Here are some aspects you’ll want to consider:
1. What glass to use
A champagne flute or any tall glass with a narrow opening is the best option, as the tall design helps retain the bubbles. But if you don’t have that, a regular wine glass will also do.
If you want to go down the quirky path and aren’t too worried about losing bubbles, you can use a wider classic champagne saucer to generate a Roaring 20s feel. Your guests will likely have to drink up much faster, though.
For really cold mimosa, you can chill your glasses before use. It’ll be like having ice minus the prospect of dilution.
2. Garnishing mimosas
It’s not necessary to garnish mimosas. But, why not?
One of the easiest ways is to use a fruit that matches the flavors in the drink:
- A pineapple or orange slice placed on the rim of the glass
- Cranberries, cherries, bits of strawberries in the drink
- Coat the rim of the glass with a bit of powdered sugar or chocolate rice for a festive garnish.
3. Making mimosas for a crowd
For large crowds, you can make mimosas either one-by-one or in a pitcher. Even if you’re using a pitcher, make sure to keep the mimosa well-chilled before guests arrive.
Premixing in a pitcher will save some time, and just like making a single mimosa, add the sparkling wine before the orange juice. But remember that you’ll lose bubbles each time you transfer the drink from glass to glass.
4. Make a mimosa bar
A mimosa bar would be a fun activity for your guests. You can set up the extra ingredients, like liqueur or fruit juices, for them to get creative with their drinks. Let them get creative and mix their own delicious mimosa!
5. What to do with leftover mimosas
As horrifying as the idea might be, leftover mimosas are a reality and probably not very delicious anymore as it has gone flat.
But you can use it to make a mimosa salad dressing:
- ½ cup of leftover mimosa
- 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon honey
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ cup light oil like sunflower
Mix all these and shake well. You can store this for up to a week in the refrigerator.
What food can you match with a mimosa?
Food to Serve with Mimosas
Since mimosas are often served as brunch cocktails, any brunch fair will match well. For example:
- Cinnamon rolls
- Stovetop oatmeal or porridge
- French Toast
- Banana pancakes
Now for some interesting facts about the drink.
Some Mimosa Fun Facts
Ever wondered where the mimosa came from or why it’s even called a mimosa?
1. Origins of the mimosa
One legend has it that it all started in London, at the Buck’s Club when a drink called Buck’s Fizz was invented in 1921. It was made of Champagne and orange juice, but with a higher ratio of sparkling wine.
About four years later, at the Ritz Hotel in Paris, a bartender named Frank Meier created a drink using equal parts of sparkling wine and orange juice — and thus, the mimosa was born!
But that’s one story.
Another tale claims that Alfred Hitchock invented the mimosa in 1940s San Francisco, when he and a friend quelled their hangover with this concoction. Hitchcock is also believed to have popularized this drink as a brunch cocktail.
2. Mimosa Day
The mimosa is such a beloved cocktail that there’s a National Mimosa Day, which falls on May 16th. So make sure you mix loads of this classic cocktail to celebrate on that date!
3. Why a mimosa is called a mimosa
The mimosa cocktail is named after the pretty, yellow flower of the mimosa plant (Acacia Dealbata), sometimes called the silver wattle or blue wattle.
Oddly enough, though its common name is ‘mimosa,’ it doesn’t belong to the genus Mimosa, a different plant group. The acacia dealbata falls under the genus Acacia and grows in Mediterannean or warm temperate regions.
The mimosa is super easy to make, and is a must-have in your brunch menu.
In case you want to expand your horizons and try some other simple wine-based cocktails, here are some cool ideas.
A Few More Easy Wine-based Cocktail Ideas
To add some variation to your drink selection, you can try these.
This follows a similar recipe - only replace the orange juice with cranberry juice.
2. Pomegranate Mimosa
Replace the orange juice in a classic mimosa recipe with pomegranate juice.
This drink is named after 15th-century artist Giovanni Bellini. For this recipe, use Prosecco or any dry sparkling wine and combine it with peach puree. The ratio is one part peach puree to two parts wine..
4. Grapefruit Rosé
Mix equal parts of rosé wine with grapefruit juice. This recipe makes a gorgeous pink drink - perfect for Mother’s Day.
5. Pineapple Sangria
This sangria recipe requires a few more ingredients. Mix 2 cups of Moscato wine, 2 cups of pineapple juice, and half a cup of orange juice. Add a quarter cup of rum and a quarter cup of Triple Sec. Throw in strawberries, and orange and lemon slices to infuse their flavors too.
6. Hibiscus Sparkler
Try this recipe for a unique cocktail your guests will love! Place a Hibiscus flower at the bottom of a glass, add a teaspoon of hibiscus syrup (if you have it), and top up with Prosecco or any dry sparkling wine.
Now, how about some sparkling wine ideas for your mimosa or other wine-based cocktails?
Also read: Discover the best ways to cellar your precious wines.
Delicious Sparkling Wines for a Mimosa
Here are some delightful, aromatic sparkling wines that will complement your mimosa.
1. Bollinger Special Cuvee Brut, Champagne, France
This Champagne Brut is a blend of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Pinot Meunier. The aroma of ripe fruit and a hint of spice make it a great wine for Mimosas.
Price of Bollinger Special Cuvee Brut: $59+
2. Delamotte Blanc de Blancs Brut, Champagne, France
This beautiful dry wine has a chalky texture with plenty of acidity. Balanced and bright, it’s fruit-forward with citruses and apples.
Price of Delamotte Blanc de Blancs Brut: $56+
3. Bisol Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Cartizze DOCG 2015, Veneto, Italy
This elegant Prosecco offers the aroma of wildflowers, apples, pears, and peaches. It’s well-balanced with intense fruitiness.
Price of Bisol Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Cartizze DOCG 2015: $43+
4. Bouvet-Ladubay Saumur Saphir Brut 2015, Loire, France
The Saphir Cuvee is full-bodied, featuring aromas of white flowers, acacia, honey and hazelnut.
Price of Bouvet-Ladubay Saumur Saphir Brut: $15+
5. Agusti Torello Mata Kripta Gran Reserva Cava 2011, Catalonia, Spain
This pale yellow-green Cava offers citrus and toast notes on the nose, with a fresh, aromatic palate.
Price of Agusti Torello Mata Kripta Gran Reserva Cava: $63+
6. Freixenet Cordon Negro Gran Seleccion Brut Cava, Catalonia, Spain
This Cava has banana aromas on the nose, a fresh palate of soft pear and apple fruit, ending with a light, orange and spicy finish.
Price of Freixenet Cordon Negro Gran Seleccion Brut Cava: $11+
7. Jacob's Creek Chardonnay - Pinot Noir Brut Cuvee, Australia
This sparkling wine is rich, structured, with a generous amount of citrus fruit and a creamy nuttiness.
Price of Jacob's Creek Chardonnay - Pinot Noir Brut Cuvee: $11+
8. Korbel Cellars California Champagne Brut, USA
The Korbel Champagne Brut offers a nose of lemon and lime combined with medium-sized bubbles. Easy on the palate, it has just a hint of sweetness and some minerality.
Price of Korbel Cellars California Champagne Brut: $15+
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Mix Mimosas (and Build a Wine Collection just as easily!)
A Mimosa is easy to make, fun to drink, and is indeed a beverage of brunches! So there’s every reason to try making them this festive season.
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