sidecar cocktail recipe: how to make a sidecar cocktail

Sidecar is a classic cocktail that is made with Cognac or Brandy and some times Armagnac. It has lately been made with Bourbon Whiskey instead of the Brandy.

As with most classic drinks, the origin of the sidecar cocktail is unclear and there are quite a few theories about it. It is believed to have been invented in the 1910s in Paris. The Ritz bar is often credited with the invention along with many of the other classic martinis from the time.

Again as with most classic cocktails, there are quite a few variations to this sidecar cocktail. Most of it involves substituting the brandy which is the base liquor in the drink with another base liquor. They are also plenty of variations with the proportions of the ingredients as well.


  • 3 Shots of Brandy or Cognac
  • 1 Shot of the Cointreau
  • Half a shot of Lime Juice
  • Fine grained sugar
  • A Lemon Slice
  • Lemon peel to Garnish


  1. Add ice cubes into a shaker
  2. Add Cognac into the shaker
  3. Add a shot of the Cointreau
  4. Add half a shot of the Lime juice
  5. Shake well to mix
  6. Rim the edges of a chilled cocktail glass with a lemon slice
  7. Dip the edges into fine-grained sugar to create a sugar rimmed glass
  8. Strain the contents of the cocktail shaker into the glass
  9. Garnish with a Lemon peel
Sidecar Drink with Cognac

Variations and Similar Drinks

Bourbon Sidecar: This recipe calls for Bourbon Whiskey instead of Brandy.
Lemon Drop Martini: This uses the Vodka instead of the Brandy and is very similar in proportions to the Sidecar.
Boston Sidecar: This uses a combination of Light Rum and Brandy in lieu of the Brandy
Between the Sheets: This adds either Light Rum or Benedictine as another ingredient to the Sidecar


  • You could Triple Sec instead of Cointreau as the orange liqueur.
  • You should use fresh lemon juice for the best taste.
  • Prepare the martini glass with sugar rim before you prepare the drink so as not to let the drink sit in the shaker for too long.