Friday, February 28, 2014

Regan Recommends - Sidecars with a Sugar Rim

Regan Worth
A few nights ago, I went to dinner at Hanover's place. Hanover made some steaks on the grill and I brought wine. Toledo brought grapefruit pie for dessert and Mary brought a couple of salads. All in all, it was a fun, relaxing meal, but the big surprise came after we ate.

Hanover brought out a bottle of cognac-- the good stuff Courvoisier VSOP Exclusif. He poured us all a glass and it was nice. It warmed me up inside. But it also got me thinking about one of my favorite drinks: the sidecar.

So I asked Hanover whether he had any fresh lemons. He had lemon juice, but it's just not the same. He didn't, of course. "Why do you want lemons anyway?" he asked.

"To make a sidecar," I said.

"Ruin a good cognac," he grumbled the way he always does when I mention something tasty.

"Whatever," I rolled my eyes and filled my glass with the straight stuff. It was good, like I said, but it was definitely not a sidecar.

Well, last night I got a surprise. Hanover stopped by with a basket of everything you need to make a sidecar. "What's the occasion?" I asked as he squeezed the lemons.

"Does there have to be an occasion?" he asked. "I was just thinking back to that boat we went on. You know...the Mud Imp. Is that what it was called?"

"The A. Neon Mud Imp. What a disaster that night was."

"I wouldn't call it a disaster. We had a good time, didn't we?" Hanover poured some cognac in the shaker.

"Not too heavy on the cognac, Hanover. I like mine a little on the tart side."

"If you want it tart, why do you put sugar on the rim?" He poured  in an equal amount of Cointreau.

Hanover always gripes about my sugar. But the fact is, I invented putting sugar on the rim of a drink. I was fifteen, I think, and I'd hang out at the Owl listening to Daddy play. They'd pour me hooch, if I asked, but it was hard to drink. So I wiped the rim of my glass with a lemon and dipped it in sugar. When I had my first sidecar a few years later, I knew it would go good with sugar. And people copied me and before long, it was all the rage.

"I just like it that way," I said. 

"Ruin a good drink," Hanover grumbled. But he wiped lemon around the rim and dipped it in granulated sugar. 

He poured the mixture into the two glasses -- one with sugar, one without.

"I think we'd better toast," he handed me my glass.

"To what?" I asked. "I thought there was no occasion."

"It looks like we might be going on another adventure?" he said.

"Where?" I asked.

"It's a surprise." He smiled and we touched glasses. Hanover knows how much I like surprises.

If you want to know more about our adventure on the A. Neon Mud Imp, you can read about it in High Rollers. If you want to know more about how to make a sidecar, visit Sidecar Recipe.