Sunday, December 30, 2007

Side Car Cocktails

In the last year I've moved towards some really retro cocktails to start out a party. Don't know why for sure as I really do enjoy a good bottle of wine. I think it came about at my last birthday we joined a friend at Musso & Frank's to celebrate and they made the first martini ever that I really liked. A LOT!

Yesterday while trying to figure out what sorta treat for a family game night to have when my cousin Paul arrived I sat down and started watching Barefoot Contessa. It may not have inspired me for a treat, but the cocktail she served got me going.
It's a Side Car Cocktail and the recipe:
Side Car
  • 1 C cognac or brandy
  • 1/2 c triple sec or Cointreau
  • 1/4 c fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • marascino cherries or lemon peel to garnish
  • For frosting the glasses: additional fresh squeezed lemon juice and sugar

If you want to frost the glasses, dip the rim of 4 martini glasses in a shallow plate of lemon juice and then in the sugar. Allow to dry for 15 minutes.

Combine the Cognac, Triple Sec, and lemon juice in a pitcher. Pour some into a cocktail shaker with ice, shake well and pour into the glasses. Garnish with a cherry or lemon peel.

In making mine I increased the lemon juice to 1/3 cup as first taste they seemed to need just a bit more of the citrus to even out the alcohol bite.

I also used both the lemon peel and cherry for the garnish on the little cocktail sword. (Those swords are a really fun 40's bit to decorate). I skewered one end of the lemon peel, added the cherry, then folded the other end of the lemon over wrapping the cherry in a "c" type bit of lemon peel.

I went through a couple of batches. It was a moderate hit in that 3 of the 4 really liked them, one was so-so on it. One other didn't like the frosted rim. I'm in the camp that I liked the frosted rim as that little bit of sugar helped cut the lemon juice.

The first batch I used Mumm VSOP cognac that I had gotten years ago (like maybe 20 years ago?). The second batch I used my favorite brandy, Korbel brand...same folks that make that traditional methode champanois bubbly in the Russian River area. The differences were minor with the brandy being sweeter than the cognac. The cognac had a bit more bite but was smoother on the back side on the way down. It is one of those things that come down to taste, I preferred the brandy as I like that little bit of sweeter on first sip.

When I google the variations Ina Garten's seemed to be the simplest in terms of assembly and flavor profiles. I got a lot of hits as well for "side car martini" which were virtually the same ingredients.

1 comment:

marcj said...

There are many types of brandy brands that I have tried but never came to know about this and really this one looking mouth watering. I will surely try this drink with bunch of my friends at my home party, as I think drinks one can enjoy in group only! Am I right dear?
best brandy