Sunday, March 7, 2010

Siderac and Smartcar

Last Thursday's TDN theme was "Plus One", where participants were charged to: Take your favorite cocktail and add one (+1) ingredient to it, put it in a dress, and give it a new name.  After first playing with the Picso Sour, I next set my sights on another of my favorite classics, the Sidecar.  I had two ideas, both of which I liked, and both of which I eventually came up with, in my humble opinion, clever names for.  The first one I simply added a healthy amount of Peychaud's bitters to:
Siderac
  • 1½ oz Cognac
  • ¾ oz Cointreau
  • ¾ oz lemon
  • 5 dashes Peychaud's
shake,strain to sugar rimmed coupe, flamed orange
This is again not a huge departure from the original, but it does add a bit of bite and some herbal notes to the classic and simple recipe, as well as imbuing the drink with a pleasant hue.  Get the anagram?  Part Sidercar and part Sazerac.  In fact the Sazerac used to be made with Cognac before the American spirit Rye eventually supplanted the Cognac as the base of the drink.  I can't decide the pronunciation, "Side-rack" or "Sid-er-ack," so I'll let the drinker decide according to his mood.

The Siderac did seem to be quite well received by those who tried it on Thursday, and I had tried it myself and submitted the drink before I even mixed up my next idea, in no small part because I thought the name of the above was cleverer by half.  However, I think I might like this next one even more.  It follows the same line of thought of adding some bite and herbal notes to the base, but uses Green Chartreuse instead of the bitters:
Smartcar
  • 1½ oz Cognac
  • ¾ oz Cointreau
  • ¾ oz lemon
  • ½ oz Green Chartreuse
shake,strain to sugar rimmed coupe, flamed orange
The name of course is because smartcars are somewhat eco-friendly, aka green.  I told you I liked the first name more.  But in any case, I liked this drink more.  But I am a sucker for my Chartreuse, as you can see from how often I make use of it in my creations.  After making this I remembered that Audrey Saunders of the Pegu Club also used Chartreuse to tweak the Sidecar in her Tantris Sidecar, so I can't claim any credit for doing it first, but she had included several other tweaks.  In any case, if memory of my last taste of the Tantris at Pegu serves, I somewhat prefer my Smartcar.  Ok, perhaps only because it uses twice as much Chartreuse, but what is one to do?

The classic recipe which I started playing with:
Sidecar
  • 1½ oz Cognac
  • ¾ oz Cointreau
  • ¾ oz lemon
shake,strain to sugar rimmed coupe, flamed orange

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