This flirty variant of the Sidecar is perfect for Valentine’s Day
Interesting name, no? But perfect for Valentine’s Day. And this drink tastes even better than it sounds.
Kiss kiss. Sip sip.
Recipe: Between the Sheets Cocktail
The Sidecar Cocktail is one of our favorite drinks. So of course we like Between the Sheets, which is, well, the Sidecar’s kissing cousin.
The Sidecar is made with cognac (or brandy), plus Cointreau and lemon juice. Between the Sheets adds rum to the mix for an extra fillip of flavor. Having two base spirits in a drink is a bit unusual (most cocktails contain just one). But cognac and rum work well together in this drink, so we’re not complaining.
This recipe takes about 5 minutes to prepare, and serves one.
- ¾ ounce cognac or brandy
- ¾ ounce rum, white or amber (see Notes)
- ¾ ounce Cointreau
- ½ ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
- lemon twist for garnish (optional)
- Add all ingredients (except garnish) to a cocktail shaker half filled with ice. Shake until the contents are nicely chilled (about 20 seconds).
- Strain into a cocktail glass or coupe, preferably one that’s been chilled. Add a lemon twist for garnish, if desired, and serve.
- The original version of this drink used very little lemon juice – a just dash or two. We prefer quite a bit more, so we use a 3:3:3:2 ratio of cognac, rum, and Cointreau to lemon juice (3 parts of each spirit to 2 parts lemon juice).
- There are a couple alternate recipes worth your consideration. For instance, you can make this drink using a 2:2:2:1 ratio if you want less lemon juice.
- Or you can try the version that David Embury suggests in his Fine Art of Mixing Drinks: 3 parts each brandy and rum (amber rum), 2 parts lime (or lemon) juice, 1 part Cointreau. Embury’s drinks are notoriously dry, so if this isn’t sweet enough for you, double the amount of Cointreau. BTW, lime juice is a fun twist, but we prefer lemon juice in this drink.
- White or amber rum? We’ve made this drink with both, and both are good. Whichever you select, choose a fairly light-bodied rum. As you might suspect, the flavor of amber rum is a bit more prominent than that of white rum.
- Cognac or brandy? Either will work, and you don’t need to spend big bucks on a fine sipping cognac. Something that costs $15 to $20 a bottle works well in cocktails. If in doubt, ask the friendly folks at your local liquor emporium what they recommend for making cocktails.
- This drink may (or may not) have been created in Paris by Harry MacElhone, of Harry’s Bar fame. Accounts of its origin differ, as is the case with so many cocktails.
“Smooth drink!” said Mrs. Kitchen Riffs. “And I think we’ve hit on the perfect formula.”
“Yup, we did a lot of research on this one,” I said. “We must have made almost a dozen different versions.”
“That’s a lot of time between the sheets,” said Mrs K R.
“You’re flirting with danger with a comment like that,” I said.
“Speaking of danger, the name of this drink was considered rather risqué when it was invented in the 1920s or 30s,” said Mrs K R.
“Sort of like the 1980s,” I said. “When people were inventing drinks with names like Sex on the Beach.”
“That must be uncomfortable,” said Mrs K R, batting her eyes. “All that sand.”
OK, probably time to turn off the lights. Happy Valentine’s Day!
You may also enjoy reading about:
The Sidecar Cocktail
The Hanky Panky Cocktail
The Vieux Carré Cocktail
The Sazerac Cocktail
The Bridal Cocktail
The Bee's Knees Cocktail
Or check out the index for more