The Sidecar was first introduced by MacGarry in London, who was a well-known bartender at the Buck’s Club. In 1948, David A. Embury spoke of the origin of Sidecar in his work Fine Art of Mixing Drinks. It credited the creation of the drink to a friend, without naming the person. He mentioned that the Sidecar was invented by a friend of his, at a bar in Paris during World War 1 and was named after a motorcycle sidecar, which the customer drove to and fro from the bar, where the drink was served. Embury had not named the bar, but it was largely assumed that he meant Harry’s New York Bar, and thus the creator of the cocktail would be Harry MacElhone.
However, in 1922 he gave the credit to Pat MacGarry, who was a popular bartender at the Buck’s Club in London. The credit of being the creator of the drink given to MacGarry was further strengthened by Robert Vermeire in his publication named Cocktails How To Mix Them, in May 1922, a few months prior to Harry MacElhone’s work.
Thus, there remains confusion regarding the creator of this classic cocktail, like many others and also how it received the name. In 1938 though, a French book claimed that the South of France was where the drink was originally from.
When can the Sidecar be enjoyed?
The Sidecar is a strong drink, with a citrus flavour to it. It is a well-balanced drink, with hints of bitterness and a slightly sour flavour, in a very palatable way of course. The drink is best enjoyed with a group of close friends, before or after dinner. So serve it anytime you want!
Appealing variation of the Sidecar
If you are someone who prefers sweeter cocktails, then the Amaretto Sidecar is just the one for you! The conventional Sidecar is made with cognac, but this version of the drink uses Amaretto instead. A generous amount of lemon juice is added to offset the flavour a little, but the nuttiness and gratifying nature of the Italian liqueur remain the same with the intense orange and lemon. Extremely delectable, put plenty of ice to enjoy the drink.
- The Cognac can be substituted with Brandy, depending on preference.
- Make sure to use premium-quality Cognac or Brandy. It makes a world of difference to the drink.
- Use freshly squeezed lemon juice and fresh Cointreau for enhanced flavours.
- Maintaining the right ratio proportion is the key to a good Sidecar recipe. The standard recipe consists of a 2:1:1 ratio of Cognac, Cointreau and fresh lemon juice.
- Shake well. The cocktail requires vigorous shaking for about 15-20 seconds. This will help mix the ingredients properly and create a nice foam on top of the drink.
- Coat the rim of the serving class with sugar
- Add the ice cubes, cognac, Cointreau and lemon juice to a shaker
- Shake well for 15-20 seconds, until the shaker turns chilled
- Double strain the drink into a coupe glass
- Garnish with the orange peel