This classic Parisian cocktail combines Chambord, gin and orange bitters to create a sweet, spicy, dry tasting cocktail. The Louis XIV makes a perfect after dinner drink and is a great choice as part of a warming autumn or winter menu.
Chambord, Gin, Orange Bitters.
*premium glassware pictured, event glassware may differ.
The Louis XIV is named after the infamous French ruler, and is a reference to his penchant towards a traditional black raspberry liqueur, said to be the basis for modern Chambord.
This subtly flavoured, stirred cocktail is made in a similar style to many European classic such as the Martini or the Martinez. A few choice ingredients are delicately combined to achieve a rich and complex flavour profile, making this an excellent choice for those wanting some strong, dry, sipping cocktails as part of their mobile bar-hire.
Whilst much of this cocktail is made up of Chambord—a black raspberry liqueur, high in sugar and low in alcohol—the rest is comprised only of gin and orange bitters. As a result this a fairly strong drink, so if you’re planning on serving it you may want to feature some softer, low ABV cocktails alongside it.
One great partner for the Louis XIV is the modern classic; the Bramble. This relatively recent creation has become a firm favourite among drinkers and bartenders alike. A balanced mixture of gin, lemon juice and blackberry liqueur, served over crushed ice, this drink is refreshing, moreish and easy to make, making it a great inclusion for a gin based cocktail menu.
For those wanting to serve some other elegant, European style stirred drinks, there are plenty of famous classics in this category. An increasingly popular choice is the Negroni; this Italian staple consists of gin, combined with bitter Campari and herbaceous sweet vermouth to make a rich and bittersweet cocktail.
If you’re interested in serving the Louis XIV as part of your cocktail menu and want to know more about what drinks could be paired with it, be sure to speak to your event organiser about your options, or check out some other gin-based, stirred and Martini-style cocktails from our list.
This cocktail is something of an enigma, whilst it seems as though it’s certainly been knocking around for a while there seems to be very little history or backstory of where and how it originated, we asked our head bartender and events manager, Jake Rogers if he knew anything more about this mysterious gin drink.
“There’s a drink called a Fancy Gin Cocktail, which is gin, triple sec and orange bitters so it may be a twist on that.”
The Fancy Gin Cocktail is a drink dating back to at least 1862 where it appears in Jerry Thomas’ How To Mix Drinks as a tweak of a regular ‘Gin Cocktail’ with seemingly very little difference apart from a different glass and the addition of a garnish. The drink is a close cousin of a Martini or a Martinez, with a ratio made up of mostly gin and a splash of triple sec in place of the usual vermouth, the Louis XIV however, takes this traditional Martini ratio and flips it, favouring the sweet liquor and using the gin as a modifier to add some much needed dryness.
However and whenever this drink came about, it’s a surprising and unusual cocktail that’s a perfect sweet treat to serve after dinner.
Myths & Legends
With its namesake being the supposed inspiration for Chambord and a key figure in their marketing, it’s safe to assume that the Louis XIV’s creation probably had something to do with the French liqueur brand, but we can’t say for sure. One thing we do know is that whilst Chambord is named after Louis XIV’s favourite summer holiday destination and hunting lodge, the Château de Chambord, and is supposedly modelled after a liqueur he drank there, the king definitely never tried the product itself, as, despite its ornate and universally recognisable branding, Chambord was only founded in 1982.
We weren’t able to find much mention of this drink, it’s not mentioned in any of our favourite cocktail books and a fairly thorough internet search turned up only two mentions of the drink, with the earliest dating back to 2013.
The cocktail is listed, albeit with a slight twist, on drinks blog intoxicologist.net, the only backstory they offer though, is that their recipe is adapted from a drink that appeared in a discussion on another, now defunct drinks blog.
Ingredients & Equipment
Chambord is an essential ingredient in this cocktail as it is the basis for its name. It’s said that Chambord is based on a traditional black raspberry liqueur which Louis XIV first tried at his hunting lodge, Chateau Chambord.
This cocktail works best with a sweet, floral gin. Try to use something with a good range of botanicals to add more spice and depth to your cocktail. We recommend Jensen’s Bermondsey Gin – this London dry uses a traditional recipe of gin botanicals to achieve a light, floral flavour with complex undertones.
Whilst the original recipe for this drink specifies orange bitters, you could try something different like Peychauds or Angostura bitters to give a more complex taste-profile to this cocktail.
- 40ml Chambord
- 20ml Gin
- 2-4 Dashes of Orange Bitters
- Orange Twist to Garnish
- Shaker or Mixing Glass
- Hawthorne Strainer or Julep Strainer
- Martini Glass or Coupette
- Cubed Ice
- Chill your glass in the freezer or fill it with ice
- Take your Boston tin or mixing glass
- Using your jigger to measure, add the Chambord and gin to the glass/tin
- Add 2-4 dashes of your bitters to the glass/tin
- Fill your glass/tin with cubed ice
- Holding your barspoon between your thumb and forefingers, stir your cocktail, being careful not to break the ice
- Remove your glass from the freezer or empty of ice if necessary
- Using your Hawthorne strainer or julep strainer, strain your cocktail into your chilled Martini glass or Coupette
- Garnish with an orange twist
- Serve and enjoy!
For larger groups of six or more students, we offer the option to take things private. Our classes are fully portable, and we are able to set ourselves up efficiently and professionally in a wide variety of locations and settings across the capital, the UK, and beyond. You name the location, and we’ll endeavour to make it happen.
Give one of our dedicated event organisers a call on 020 8003 7982. They’ll happily talk you through your options, and answer any questions you may have about both our mobile and in-house cocktail making classes.