Kir is a cocktail born in Burgundy, France in the 19th century. The mayor of Dijon by the name of Félix Kir helped to popularize the drink, consisting of a white Burgundy wine spiked with locally produced Crème de Cassis (a blackcurrant liqueur). The drink eventually became known internationally as a “Kir” and typically just a few splashes of Crème de Cassis are added to give the drink a pale pink blush. For the holidays, or special occasions, using a dry champagne instead transforms this cocktail into a Kir Royale. Depending upon your tolerance for sweetness, a little extra liqueur can be added to create the beautiful gem-like hue shown below.
Interesting note about Crème de Cassis from Food.com: “It dates back to the 16th century, and was first produced by monks in France as a cure for snake bites, jaundice, and wretchedness.”
Paul first heard about the Kir Royale while touring wineries in Burgundy. After he arrived back home he made it a mission to mix his own as soon as possible and find out what all the hubbub was about. After many taste tests, he decided he preferred enough of the liqueur to turn his glass ruby red. I decided I’m partial to about half as much – not quite as Royale but still a respectably regal drink nonetheless. We’ve used Prosecco too with excellent results. Drop in a raspberry or two for an illustrious cure for wretchedness, elegantly delivered by berries and bubbles.