Cocktail Convalescence

Posted by: on Mar 19, 2010 | 2 Comments

So, today’s the day. Oral half of my honors exams, t minus 4 hours and counting. I am already thinking about what reward I will be mixing up and enjoying before throwing on the bowtie and patent loafers and sauntering off to the celebratory banquet feeling 20 pounds lighter.

Tonight, I think the solution is going to have to be a Sidecar. Not something I have been having a lot lately, but one of the first cocktails I ever really learned how to make. My mother introduced me to cognac, her spirit of choice, and when I began making cocktails, I already loved it and it seemed like the right place to start. A little sweet, a little sour, very crisp and clean, and although not quite as popular as the Martini, I think every bit as enjoyable when done properly. Over time, this has become my favorite recipe, although it is a little bit different than most people’s:

4 parts Cognac
2 parts Cointreau
1 part Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice
1 dash Orange Bitters (I prefer Fee Bros. personally)

Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a swatch of lemon peel.

Well, I cheated and made one earlier this week so that I could take a picture, but I must say this evening’s will probably taste especially wonderful for obvious reasons.


  1. Future Dad
    March 24, 2010

    Just found your blog and am enjoying it immensely. I felt compelled to comment on this post because the Sidecar is my go-to cocktail. Got introduced to it at a restaurant a few years ago with a recipe that I have refined over those years. It is very close to yours. 3 parts Cognac, 2 parts Cointreau (I find any other orange liqueur not as good) and 1 part lemon juice. Can't wait to try it with some orange bitters – I think I have some blood orange bitters in the fridge. Cheers!

  2. Stephen Pulvirent
    March 24, 2010

    Future Dad –

    I am glad you like both the blog and the Sidecar. In general, I think it is a very undervalued cocktail by most people.

    For me, the biggest thing the orange bitter do is add a nice aroma of orange on top of the lemon. The lemon juice usually seems to squelch the other aromas in my opinion, but it is necessary for flavor – the bitters fix this one-dimensionality a bit for me. Let me know how you like it.


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