Monday, July 6, 2009

Citron pressé

I've incorporated a lot of France into my life, but there are just a few things that really put me at a sidewalk café, mid-afternoon, for a pause and some people-watching. One of them is citron pressé.

Some say citron pressé is just a fancy French name for lemonade, but, I disagree. Citron pressé is made to order, by the glass rather than the pitcher. Order this drink at any café in France, and the waiter will bring you a tall glass filled with ice and the juice of a freshly squeezed lemon. Alongside your glass you'll receive a carafe of cold water, and one--maybe two--sugars. You adjust the water and sugar to taste.

The first time I had citron pressé was in Annecy. We had spent the afternoon walking around the old city and it was time for a pause. I don't remember what I ordered, but my sister ordered a citron pressé and I was immediately intrigued (especially by her expert pronunciation!) She let me taste it and everyone was amused by my reaction to this tart drink!

Because it is so tart, you have to sip a citron pressé, which makes the taste, and the pause, last that much longer. Try the recipe below and see if you don't agree.

4 oz fresh-squeezed lemon juice
Pitcher of chilled water
Granulated sugar

Put a small amount of ice into 2 glasses
Pour 2 oz lemon juice into each glass
Add water and stir in sugar to taste

Makes 2 servings.


  1. Another inexpensive, well-timed, French suggestion. Merci!

  2. Merci, Marsi! It is a well-timed post, n'est-ce pas? I made it this afternoon and thought it might be nice to share.

    I never acknowledged your comment about the Fleur de Sel caramels, but I think I want to try and make them in France, with my sister. It would be fun for us to do it together and impress our friends!

  3. I love citron presse and orange presse, nothing beats having juice absolutely 100% fresh!

  4. I think I will try this today. I need to pick up some things from the market so I will add lemons to my list.

  5. I had forgotten all about these from my time in France - lemons there always on my list but I'll have to add extra!

  6. Sweet serendipity! A search "citron pressé" search led me to your blog. Being half French and having just returned from visiting family, I wanted to prepare a citron pressé for what will be another hot San Francisco October day. I, too, have added French flavors and touches to my humble apartment so your blog is one I will visit often ;~})

    A la prochaine!



  7. Making this for 28 people.....yummy

    1. Have fun! I love Citron Presse

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