Cocktail of the week

The Sidecar—warm up with a French classic.

Cognac is the kind of liquor that warms the cockles—and if you happen to be riding around the streets of Paris in motorcycle sidecar, then warmth is precisely what you’re after.

The story goes that Harry’s Bar in Paris invented the sidecar in the early 20th century for just that purpose—a US army captain who was a regular at the bar used a sidecar as his preferred mode of transport to the bar.

The French recipe is pretty straightforward: equal parts cognac, Cointreau and lemon juice. Rumour has it that this has been simplified from the original formula. The English, typically, reject the French way of doing things and opt for 2:1:1 proportions.

If you’re not a sweet tooth, daiquiri proportions of 8:2:1 will tone down the lemon juice. If you ARE a sweet tooth, you may choose to rim the glass with sugar.

If so desired, you may substitute the cognac for brandy and the Cointreau for another triple sec (quelle horreur!), but here’s how the French do it…



30ml cognac
30ml Cointreau
30ml fresh lemon juice
Lemon twist OR sugar for coating rim

(Optional: Moisten the rim of a cocktail glass with lemon juice, dip rim in sugar and swirl to coat)
Combine juice, Cointreau and cognac in a shaker over ice. Shake for 20-30 seconds. Strain into a cocktail glass. If the rim is not sugared, garnish with a lemon twist.

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