French 75, from the H2O at the Hilton Pensacola Beach


From our feature, The Vivant’s Top Ten Fabulous Gin Cocktail Recipes, Chef Omar Torres at the H2O at the Hilton Pensacola Beach shares a recipe for the very trendy French 75 with THE VIVANT.

Oh, how I wish I were on the beach in Florida, enjoying the warm sun and sipping on a fabulous cocktail. Today I will have to settle with my back yard, and tonight I’m going to try a French 75. This drink seems to be all the rage, with mentions on popular television shows and pictures all over Instagram, with every bartender serving them up with their own special flair.

And speaking of flair, Chef Omar Torres, Director of Food & Beverage and Head Chef at the H2O at the Hilton Pensacola Beach has his own twist on this very special drink, and he was good enough to share the recipe with me, so I can have one at home to tide me over until my next trip to the Florida coast. Chef Omar filled me in on a little of the drink’s history. It dates back to World War I, and was created in 1915 at the New York Bar in Paris, and became very popular during Prohibition – and it’s making a big comeback this year. It’s a perfect drink – and Chef Omar says, “The acidity of the lemon brings out the great flavors of juniper berries in gin while sugar brings balance and the champagne gives a crispy clean finish sensation to the palate in this classic gentlemen’s cocktail that should be in every fine bar.” Chef Omar says he makes his with Florida’s St. Augustine gin, lemon juice, sugar cube, and Raventos de Nit.


  • 1-1/2 oz gin
  • ¾ oz fresh lemon juice
  • 1 sugar cube
  • 2-3 oz champagne
  • Lemon peel garnish