Happy Hour: Champagne Cocktails and Chocolate Covered Potato Chips

Tonight’s happy hour is a nice and simple one.  I had some raspberries left over from making my tarts and since my baby doll does not like strawberries, in our household it is raspberries and champagne that go together. In the summertime we drink a spritzer that is half raspberry lemonade and half champagne.  This is sort of a February version of the summer spritzer.

For this cocktail I took a few very ripe raspberries, put them in a small dish with about a tablespoon of lemon juice and mashed the berries and lemon juice together. I should have strained them, as you can see from the floating bits in the champagne, but I did not.  I suggest you strain them so you don’t have seeds in your drink. A normal strainer will do. 

Then put a spoonful of the lemon raspberry mix in the champagne glass, add the champagne and top off with raspberries on a stick.

Super simple and super fun.

I definitely recommend straining the raspberry seeds out though.

In this mix I used a Ballatore Champagne.  It is my no means high end champagne and for this you don’t need high end champagne.  Ballatore is actually one of my favorite mixing and cooking champagnes.  It is inexpensive and it is sweet without being cloying. 

In this case it goes well with the tartness of the berries and the sharpness of the lemon juice.  For this there is no real recipe because it really does depend on the berries.  If they are really sweet then add a little more lemon juice.  If they are kind of tart, add less lemon juice.  The mix in the dish should make you pucker slightly but not wince.

As for this super simple cocktail?

We went for a super simple treat.  I had some chocolate chips left over from making my mousse so I put them in a microwave safe bowl, put them in the microwave for fifteen seconds, stired, put them on for another fifteen seconds and then stirred again.  I think there were about five sets of stirring.  Why did I not just put them on for a minute and fifteen seconds then you ask?

a quick dunk in melted chocolate

Because the chocolate would burn.  Stirring them after every fifteen seconds (even though after the first fifteen you might think they didn’t need it) helps distribute the heat so there are no hot spots in the bowl. Distribute the heat and then the chocolate doesn’t burn.

And once we had the melted chocolate, we did something super spectacular.  We dipped ruffled potato chips into it, coating half the chip. I like the ruffled chips because of the ridges and because the Ruffles brand is super salty to pair well with the sweet chocolate.  I am a sucker for the salty sweet combo. 

Let dry on a rack for a bit so they are less messy or just dip and eat from the bowl. I prefer them a little dry, my baby doll likes to dip

Pretzels will also work. It pairs especially well with the sweet tart combo of the drink.  I know it is sort of a quick and fun Happy hour treat but since Sunday I am making a serious mal with good red wine followed by a toast with the good champagne.

Something simple and fun seemed just the thing to wind down this week. It utilized left over chocolate and raspberries, an extra lemon I had in the fridge, part of a bag of potato chips and an inexpensive bottle of champagne, but sitting down toasting my baby as we wind down another week, I felt like a million bucks.

No Fine Print Wine

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