Cognac Houses have long since accepted that their products will be mixed and in many instances have embraced the use of their cognacs in cocktails. Indeed, cognac houses, like Hennessy and Rémy Martin present cognac cocktail recipes on their web sites that highlight the use of their cognacs in preparing cocktails.
One of the most popular cognac cocktails is the sidecar. Hennessy and Rémy Martin offer their own recipes for this iconic cocktail. The classic sidecar recipe includes three basic ingredients: Cognac, lemon juice and triple sec (orange-flavored liqueur).
The suggested cognacs to be used in mixing a sidecar run the full range of cognac designations from V.S. to V.S.O.P. to X.O. The latter two designations, however, especially X.O. cognacs, are more often associated with sipping than mixing.
Rémy Martin presents a sidecar recipe using one of its finer cognacs, 1738 Accord Royal, to create a Royal Sidecar. Rémy Martin’s Royal Sidecar also calls for the triple sec to be Cointreau, which is no surprise as the conglomerate that owns the Rémy Martin cognac brand and Cointreau liqueur is aptly named Rémy Cointreau.
Hennessy recommends that either its V.S. or V.S.O.P. Privilege be use as the base for its sidecar recipe. Hennessy also recommends that Grand Marnier, a cognac based, bitter orange flavored liqueur be used instead of triple sec.
Riding Even More Upscale
While neither Hennessy nor suggest that their X.O. cognac offerings be used as sidecar mixers, bartenders have been known to create higher end sidecars like the Hennessy Bentley Sidecar, that features Hennessy X.O. and Grand Marnier or the Sidecar De Magnifique, a sidecar mixed with Hennessy X.O Cognac, Cointreau & Grand Marnier Centenaire (made with 125 year old X.O. cognac).
Cognac.com Cocktail Corner
To make a sidecar you will need:
A Coupe or Martini Glass