Best Cognac or Brandy for a Sidecar?
The Jordan Mackay story on Cointreau and Triple Sec http://www.chow.com/stories/10932 got me thinking about Sidecars--specifically, that although I am old enough to have lived under in ten different US Presidents and I am fond of both cognac and Cointreau I have somehow never managed to drink them together. Have never had a Sidecar. Must remedy this soon.
So, mindful of Jordan Mackay's other current article that reminds us that the most expensive spirits are often not the best mixers (true dat), when I order my first sidecar (or when I make it at home), what cognac or brandy should I ask for? Any other recommendations from those who drink these all the time?
I use cheap Californian brandies, never Cognac or Armagnac, in my Sidecars. E&J or Christian Brothers does the job. Of course, I use fresh lemon juice, and for the orange liqueur, Cointreau or Marie Brizzard Triple Sec, plus simple syrup made by shaking 5 parts of ordinary cane sugar till dissolved in 4 parts of tepid water.
My current Sidecar proportions: 8 brandy, 4 orange liqueur, 3 fresh lemon juice, 1 simple syrup. Shake over lots of ice, strain into a chilled cocktail glass, garnish with a lemon twist. I avoid sugar rims, but if someone asks for one, I make it a point to only sugar the outer rim of the glass.
Not traditional, but we really like Sidecars made with B and B, which is Benedictine and Brandy.
B and B's delicious on its own, but it gives another flavor dimension to the Sidecar