Celebrate International Champagne Day with a Bubbly Brunch

Celebrate International Champagne Day with a Bubbly Brunch

Written by
October 9, 2018

Sunday 21 October is International Champagne Day, so why not celebrate all things bubbly with a bougie brunch bash. Just as champagne is the drink of choice of royalty, so too is breakfast the food of kings. So, pop a few bottles and jump into the kitchen to whip up some of these simple (but delicious) dishes.

Banoffee French Toast

Champagne is the (un)official drink of decadence, so it seems only fitting to serve up something that’s unapologetically over the top. If you’re a sweet-tooth, then this is the dish for you. Whipped cream and chocolate drizzled over pillowy brioche bread? Sounds like a good time.

100g dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
125mL thickened cream
3 eggs, lightly whisked
80mL milk
2 teaspoons caster sugar
2 teaspoons dark cocoa powder, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
40g butter, chopped
8 x 2cm-thick slices brioche bread
380g can Nestlé Caramel Top ‘n’ Fill
Whipped cream, to serve
2 large bananas, thickly sliced diagonally, to serve

1. Place the chocolate and cream in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for one minute. Stir until melted and smooth. Set aside and keep warm.
2. Place the egg, milk, sugar, cocoa powder and vanilla in a large bowl. Whisk until smooth and combined.
3. Melt 10g butter in a large frying pan over medium heat. Dip two pieces of brioche in the egg mixture and turn to coat. Cook, turning, for 1–2 minutes each side or until golden brown. Transfer to a plate and keep warm. Wipe the pan clean with paper towel. Repeat with the remaining butter, brioche and egg mixture.
4. Place the caramel in a bowl and whisk until smooth.
5. Place a slice of French toast on each serving plate. Divide half the whipped cream, caramel and sliced banana among the French toast, covering each slice. Top with the remaining French toast, whipped cream, caramel and banana. Drizzle each toast stack with the warm chocolate sauce.

To drink:
There’s enough going on with the food side of things that we think that dressing up the drinks might just lead to sensory overload. Instead, choose a glass of brut (I.e. not too sweet) champagne – like Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut NV or Taittinger Brut Reserve NV – and serve chilled.

Bacon and Haloumi Breakfast salad

Salads don’t have to be dull affairs, as this loaded breakfast version proves. While we can’t attest to the health benefits of adding bacon and haloumi to your veggies, we can definitively say that it does wonders for the overall taste.

2/3 cup finely shredded red cabbage
2/3 cup finely shredded savoy cabbage
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
200g haloumi cheese, sliced
8 rashers streaky bacon
250g packet carrot and pumpkin noodles
2 x 250g packets microwave brown rice and quinoa
60g baby French kale
4 soft-boiled eggs, peeled, halved
Fresh oregano leaves, to serve


1. Place cabbages and vinegar in a medium bowl. Season with salt. Set aside for 20 minutes or until cabbage softens slightly.
2. Meanwhile, heat half the oil in large frying pan over medium heat. Cook haloumi for two minutes each side or until browned. Transfer to a plate.
3. Heat remaining oil in same pan over high heat. Cook bacon for two minutes each side or until browned and crisp. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel.
4. Cook carrot noodles following packet directions. Drain cabbage. Add carrot noodles. Toss to combine.
5. Cook quinoa mix following packet directions. Divide quinoa among serving bowls. Add cabbage mixture, kale, haloumi, bacon and eggs. Sprinkle with oregano.

To drink:
After bubbles, the Bloody Mary is probably the most iconic brunch cocktail – so why not combine them and make a Sparkling Mary? Fill a champagne flute two-thirds full with tomato juice, add a dash of hot sauce, a teaspoon each of Worcestershire sauce and lemon juice, a sprinkling of salt and pepper, then top with B Francois Brut NV.

Simple pancakes

Without pancakes, is it even a real brunch? It’s a question for the ages, but luckily one that we don’t have to answer – because we’re serving up syrup-soaked short stacks that’ll have you coming back for seconds.

2 eggs
420mL cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
2 cups self-raising flour
1/3 cup caster sugar
Butter, for frying, plus extra to serve
Maple syrup, to serve
Mixed berries, to serve

1. Whisk eggs, milk and vanilla together in a jug. Sift flour into a large bowl. Stir in sugar. Make a well in the centre. Add milk mixture. Whisk until just combined.
2. Heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Grease pan with butter or spray with cooking oil. Using a quarter-cup of mixture per pancake, cook two pancakes for two minutes or until bubbles appear on surface. Turn and cook for a further one–two minutes or until cooked through. Transfer to a plate. Cover loosely with foil to keep warm. Repeat with remaining mixture, greasing pan with butter or cooking oil between batches.
3. Serve with maple syrup and extra butter.

To drink:
Put aside some of the berries from the pancakes for an infused champagne cocktail. Fill a champagne flute two-thirds full with Yellowglen NV Yellow Sparkling White or Jacob's Creek Reserve Sparkling Prosecco, add a splash of Absolut Vanilia Vodka and simple syrup, then dress with a few berries. If you’re feeling really fancy, add a couple of freshly torn mint leaves to the mix.


This Tunisian-inspired brunch dish is sure to impress, but it’s super-easy to make. The best thing about Shakshouka is that it’s a meal that’s easily scaled. If you’re cooking for more people than you expected, just throw a few extra eggs in the pan.

1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
1 large red onion, thinly sliced
1 large red capsicum, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 long fresh red chilli, thinly sliced
¼ teaspoon caster sugar
2 x 400g cans diced tomatoes
4 eggs
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
2 teaspoons ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon dried chilli flakes (optional)

1. Heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium-low heat. Cook onion for three minutes or until soft. Stir in capsicum, garlic and fresh chilli for five minutes or until soft. Stir in paprika, cumin, ground coriander, dried chilli flakes and sugar for one minute or until aromatic. Season.
2. Add the tomato. Cook, stirring often, for 15 minutes or until mixture thickens slightly. Remove from heat. Use the back of a spoon to make four large, evenly spaced indents in the mixture. Crack an egg into each indent.
3. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 7–8 minutes for soft yolks or until cooked to your liking.

To drink:
Keep things simple on the drinks front to savour the richness of the food. Sparkling wine is most commonly associated with whites, but with this dish we’d go with a chilled glass of sparkling red – like the Grant Burge Pinot Noir Chardonnay NV.