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Kir French Cocktail

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Fancy a classy French cocktail?

Written by Miriam Laurovics

What is Kir?

Kir pronounced as ke-a  is a popular light French cocktail called crème de cassis. Essentially, it is a syrupy blackcurrant liqueur that acts as a thick dark sweetener to wine.

The exceptional bold sweetness and aroma from the blackcurrant mixed with the acidity from wine is a perfect balance and a match made in heaven. This chilled drink is usually taken before a meal or as a snack to stimulate the appetite.


What is the classic French cocktail drink Kir?

Photo credit: cookingtoentertain

Who created Kir?

This simple yet flavour-packed drink originated in Burgundy during World War II. It was created and named after a favourable catholic priest and politician, Canon Felix Kir, who was a World War II hero and also the mayor of the Burgundian city of Dijon.

The story goes that he would mix the liqueur with aligoté white wine and often serve it to international guests at meetings and gatherings to show off the local wine.

How is Kir made?

Blackcurrants are softened and marinated for 10-12 weeks in neutral alcohol which is then collected without pressing.

Kir variations

“Un Kir”. Kir is commonly mixed with white wine.

“Kir Breton”. You can choose to replace white wine with Cider.

Mixing Kir with champagne is called “Kir Royal”.

Mixing Kir with red wine is called “Communard”.

Although originally made with blackcurrant or blackberry liqueur, Kir is now enjoyed with a variety of liqueur flavours. These include raspberry, peach, rose, cherry-ginger, raspberry-pepper, or even chestnut!

The sweetness of the aromatic berry with the acidity and refreshment of wine makes Kir a PERFECT drink option for summer. Kir is super easy to make and perfect for a classy cocktail party.

Kir Royale recipe:

Easy Kir Royale recipe

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Just 2 ingredients and 2 steps.

  • Firstly, pour 30-45ml of the liqueur into a flute glass depending on how sweet you like your drink to be. Then top the rest of the glass with sparkling wine.
  • To step it up a notch, you can garnish your drink with a slice of lemon, raspberry, or blackberry!
  • Top tip: Chill the glass beforehand by adding and stirring ice cubes in the glass.


Fancy a kir? We have a pure blackcurrant liqueur on our website that is from a winery in France, called “Jacoulot”.

Jacoulot has an excellent reputation throughout Burgundy and beyond! The kir goes nicely with a Pinot Noir Champagne that is worth checking out.

Have you tasted kir before? If so, let us know what you think in the comments below!


Master Your Glass 2019, ‘Master Your Glass! Kir VS. Kir Royale’, <Master Your Glass! Kir VS. Kir Royale – YouTube>.