A recent brunch at Oxford Exchange enlightened me. On the brunch menu were numerous, interesting plays on mimosas I had never considered before. My boozy brunch had been boxed into the idea of orange juice, sometimes peach, and champagne. I quickly learned a Magnolia was cran and champagne, and a Carolina mixed the bubbles with grapefruit. The possibilities seemed endless. So for my own at-home brunch this past weekend, my Drink of the Week tasters and I experimented with our take on mimosas. • To make, start with three or four bottles of champagne. And unless you're entertaining parents, bosses or the president, just buy the cheap stuff. André and Cook's are used in most restaurants across Tampa Bay, and they were good enough for us. Stock the rest of the bar with a variety of fruit juices. Here are our concoctions.
MAGNOLIA: Champagne and cranberry
The tartness of cranberry juice aids in the richness of this version. Pair with a sweet breakfast of waffles, pancakes or a Dutch baby.
CAROLINA: Champagne and grapefruit
Grapefruit proved to be a controversial flavor. Some loved the bitterness and kept going back for refills while others took one sip and gagged.
DETOXMOSA: Champagne and green tea
Okay, keeping it real — we only added green tea to get a light-colored mimosa for the photo, but the flavor was a surprise hit. It inspired us to possibly use sweet tea next time, as part of a Southern-themed brunch.
TRADITIONAL: Champagne and orange juice
Classic is king. There is a reason mimosas are the brunch drink of choice for many. The best mimosas have the best orange juice, so don't skimp on quality.
RAZZ FIZZ: Champagne and raspberry lemonade
Easily the most popular, raspberry lemonade played perfectly with the champagne, resulting in a fizzy drink perfect for porch sipping.
BELLINI: Champagne and peach juice/nectar
The decadent sweetness of peach nectar marries perfectly with the dry fizz of champagne. If the flavor of nectar is too sweet, try looking for peach juice or watering down the nectar.
LIME FIZZ: Champagne and limeade
For a twist on the Razz Fizz, and something a little more tart, sub in limeade for the raspberry lemonade. It's a cooler, crisper take.