The sidecar is a fantastic drink to have in one’s arsenal. It’s simple to make, it uses ingredients that you should definitely have in your home bar, and you can quickly and easily adjust the proportions to match anyone’s tastes. It's one of my top ten cocktails ever (hmmm … that sounds like a future article), a perfect marriage of sweet, sour, and booze. The most common recipe calls for equal parts of all three ingredients, but I like it a little stronger, so I double up on the brandy.
Don't leave out the sugared rim! It's a bit more mess, but it's worth it. Really elevates the drink and helps balance against the big wallop of the lemon juice. To do it, lay out a plate and put a little fine granulated sugar on it (I used vanilla sugar). Then moisten the rim of the glass by running a lemon wedge over it, and roll it gently in the sugar until it's picked up a good amount. The idea is to crust the exterior while not really getting any sugar inside the glass.
If for some reason you can’t manage the sugared rim, definitely drop the lemon juice by at least a quarter of an ounce.
- 1.5 oz. Brandy (Courvoisier VS is nice, E&J Brandy is fine)
- .75 oz. Curacao (Pierre Ferrand)
- .75 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker over ice and shake thoroughly. Strain into a chilled, sugar-rimmed cocktail coupe. No garnish.
This article is a modified and enhanced version of a post that ran on my nightly cocktail blog, DrinkShouts.