With the amount of citrus flavour in this Citrus Sidecar Cocktail, it’s as refreshing as it is delicious. Prepared with brandy, triple sec, and lemon juice, this cocktail is shaken with ice until really cold and then poured into a chilled glass with an orange twist.
CITRUS SIDECAR COCKTAIL
A Citrus Sidecar Cocktail, most often referred to as simple a sidecar, is considered to be one of the best cocktails of all time. Invented about 100 years ago, it is still very popular today. I’m most certainly not a cocktail expert, but I think it’s because the sidecar is just so well balanced. It is perfectly sweet, sour, tart, and warm.
There are several variations of the recipe. The recipe was originally most commonly made with cognac. Cognac, of course, is brandy specifically from the Cognac region of France. To be perfectly honest, you can make a sidecar cocktail with either brandy, cognac, Armagnac, or bourbon. In most present-day bars, bourbon is used, making the Citrus Sidecar Cocktail a Bourbon Sidecar.
Once you have chosen your liquor, pay close attention to the remaining ingredients. Like I mentioned above, the Sidecar needs to be perfectly balanced in order to be perfectly delicious. You want to find the balance between sweet and sour. Adding too much lemon juice, for instance, will cancel out that sweet flavour. Here’s how I made mine, so that all the right notes were highlighted simultaneously.
HERE’S WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
- Brandy – Brandy is a distilled spirit produced from fermented fruit juice. Most often, the fruit is grapes—making brandy distilled wine—though apple, apricot, peach, and other fruits can be used to make brandy. Brandy tastes sweet and fruity. It’s not syrupy sweet, but is subtly sweet instead.
- Triple Sec – Triple Sec is used in so many cocktails it would be unthinkable to not keep a bottle as part of your bar basics. It is clear in colour, and it is fragrant with orange peel and juicy citrus aroma and flavour. There’s a good balance of bitter and sweet. Oftentimes, Triple Sec is deemed a lower quality orange liqueur, but if it’s good enough for Ina Garten, it’s good enough for me!
- Lemon Juice – Whenever you see a cocktail prepared with lemon juice, always assume that the juice is freshly squeezed. Under no circumstances is it okay to use anything you can buy from the store in bottle!
HOW TO MAKE A CITRUS SIDECAR COCKTAIL
Add the brandy, triple sec, and lemon juice to a cocktail shaker. Add enough ice to cover the liquid in the bottom of the shaker. Shake for 30 seconds until the cocktail mixture is really cold.
Strain into a chilled old-fashioned glass and garnish with an orange twist. Be sure to prepare the twist directly over the glass so that the released oils from the orange get into the cocktail. Serve immediately.
DRESS IT UP
Because of the fact that some people can find all of that citrus to be a bit too much, this cocktail can also be served in a different way to offset some of that. Rather than serving the cocktail in an old-fashioned glass, serve it in a coupe or martini glass instead.
Before you mix and pour the drink, you will want to prepare the glass. In this case, the rim of the glass should be sugared. That basically means that the entire rim of the glass is dipped in sugar, so when the glass is sipped from, the citrusy drink is mixed with the sugar. Here’s how to rim a glass.
Squeeze lemon or orange juice into a small, shallow dish. Holding the glass upside down, dip the rim into the juice. Next, dip the rim into sugar. Turn the glass upright and allow the sugared rim to dry for five to ten minute before pouring in the cocktail.
Citrus Sidecar Cocktail
- 1 3/4 ounces brandy
- 3/4 ounce triple sec
- 3/4 ounce lemon juice
- orange twist
- Add the brandy, triple sec, and lemon juice to a cocktail shaker. Add enough ice to cover the liquid in the bottom of the shaker. Shake for 30 seconds until the cocktail mixture is really cold.
- Strain into a chilled old-fashioned glass and garnish with an orange twist. Be sure to prepare the twist directly over the glass so that the released oils from the orange get into the cocktail. Serve immediately.