Today—May 16—is National Mimosa Day. The beloved breakfast and brunch classic has been subjected to many iterations, and while there are countless ways to make a mimosa, here are a few secrets to creating the perfect version.

The Best Champagne?

The wine aisle can be intimidating, with many options and varieties. It is believed that Champagne is the only wine that can be used when making a mimosa—but that’s not the case. It is best to go with a sparkling wine such as a Prosecco or Cava. You can even be creative and go for a rosé!

The sweetness levels will vary based on your preference and selection. You may see terms on the front label, such as “Brut” or “Demi Sec.” Brut has a lower sugar content making it dry, while Demi Sec will be sweeter.

Avoid 'Pour' Decisions

When making a mimosa, many believe it does not matter which ingredient goes in first—the juice or the sparkling wine. But the order does matter. First, pour your sparkling wine slowly, then pour your juice. This prevents your sparkling wine from overflowing and losing the carbonated bubbles that brings body to the drink. Do not shake or mix either, since that will make the sparkling wine flat.

Juice it Up

Your choice of sparkling wine cannot do all the heavy lifting in your drink. A mimosa is only as good as its other half—the juice. Store-bought juice is easy and convenient, but nothing can compare to the flavor and brightness of freshly-squeezed juice. Also, orange isn’t the only option for a mimosa. You can go with a variety of fruits and flavors, such as strawberry, grapefruit, pineapple, and more!

There is a reason why mimosas are universally loved. They are a perfect introduction to wine for beginners and customizable enough for everyone to enjoy for their preferred tastes. Raise your glass and toast to the mimosa!

 

Jim Cunningham is with Merkin Vineyards & Caduceus Cellars, which makes high-elevation wines out of predominantly Italian and Spanish varieties from its 110 acres of estate vines in Northern and Southern Arizona. Merkin Vineyards is open for wine tastings, lunch, and dinner.