Cocktail concoctions

The origin of the Sidecar cocktail is disputed but is believed to have been invented towards the end of World War 1 in either London or Paris. It was, of course, named after the motorcycle sidecar  a-la Two Fat Ladies. The Ritz Hotel in Paris claims to be the drink’s birthplace.

The first recipes for the Sidecar appear in 1922, in Harry MacElhone’s Harry’s ABC of Mixing Cocktails and Robert Vermeire’s Cocktails and How to Mix Them. It is one of six basic drinks listed in David A. Embury’s The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks (1948).

In early editions of MacElhone’s book, he cites the inventor as Pat MacGarry, “the popular bartender at Buck’s Club, London”, but in later editions he cites himself.

Vermiere states that the drink was: “very popular in France. It was first introduced in London by MacGarry, the celebrated bartender of Buck’s Club.”

Embury credits the invention of the drink to an American army captain in Paris during World War I and says it was named after the motorcycle sidecar that the captain used.

  • 45ml cognac

  • 22.5ml cointreau

  • 22.5ml fresh lemon juice

  • 10ml sugar syrup (1:1 sugar and water)


Fill your cocktail shaker with ice.

Shake & strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Garnish with a twist of orange.

Image credit: Claire Absolum