Classic Sidecar Cocktail Recipe

by Mama Loves A Drink

One of the most well-known cocktails made from cognac, the Sidecar is a classic sour cocktail that has been around for generations.

Its origins and the meaning of the name “Sidecar” are far from clear cut. There’s debate over whether it is an English or French classic, or in fact a twist on Brandy Crusta, originating from New Orleans.

At the core of the flavours though for a classic Sidecar cocktail is of course Cognac, a type of Franch brandy and citrus – most commonly Cointreau. Although there are modern twists, it’s a delicate balancing act between sweet and sour.

Here’s our favourite version of the Sidecar!

A sugar rimmed coupe glass with a Sidecar cocktail
How to make your own Sidecar Cocktail at home. This classic cognac recipe is a sophisticated and warming drink ideal for any occasion | Mama Loves Cocktails | Mama Loves A Drink

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Tools you will need for making a Sidecar Cocktail

  • Coupe glass
  • Cocktail shaker
  • Citrus juicer
  • Channel knife or citrus peeler
  • Ice cubes

Find all our favourite tools for your home cocktail bar here.

Yield: 1

Sidecar Cocktail

Sidecar Cocktail

An all-time classic recipe that's seen plenty of twists in its time but still remains a popular classy and sophisticated cocktail, particular for the ladies

Prep Time 3 minutes
Total Time 3 minutes


  • 60ml Cognac
  • 30ml Cointreau
  • 25ml Fresh lemon juice
  • Orange or lemon twist to garnish
  • Sugar to garnish


  1. Rub some lemon around the rim of a coupe glass and coat in sugar
  2. Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice
  3. Shake well and strain into glass
  4. Garnish with a lemon or orange twist


An Armagnac or brandy can be used in place of the cognac, or even a cherry brandy for a sweeter finish. It's recommended only younger cognac be used in cocktail mixers.

Some similar cocktails to the Sidecar

There are several variations on the Sidecar including the Boston Sidecar (using rum & brandy) and a Bourbon Sidecar (Borboun replacing the Cognac) but we’ll be honest, the classic is simply the best!

Don’t miss our take on “Between the Sheets” – a class cognac/brandy and rum cocktail.

Celebrate with a Sidecar on National Cognac Day, 4 June.

Mama Loves A Drink advocates quality over quantity. Always drink responsibly!

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