Throughout the summer, I've been enjoying the hell out of light, refreshing cocktails — I can't get enough of them. But then last week happened. Last week, I needed something strong.
What went down, you ask? Well, though I realize this comes off as extremely #FirstWorldProblems, I went grocery shopping with my significant other.
Trips to the store for essentials usually aren't a big deal, but our most recent visit was different. I really didn't want to go. I'd had a rough day, one of those days that drives you to a few drinks and a big bowl of mac and cheese. Still, she insisted, "Let's just grab something quick for dinner."
Famous last words.
Two hundred dollars, and two arguments later, we left the store, and my want for a stiff cocktail turned into a need. Luckily, a friend of mine brought me a bottle of Hennessy Pure White back from his cruise. Now we're in business, I thought.
I believe I first introduced Cognac to On the Sauce in our historic Sidecar recipe, and the spirit is exactly what the doctor ordered — even this week. While I don't know if HPW is actually impossible to find in the States, that's what I was told (and it isn't listed on Hennessy's U.S. website).
Feel free to substitute HPW with your favorite VSOP Cognac (that's Very Superior Old Pale), but don't cheap out too much. The following cocktail, French Summer, is meant for sipping, so you'll want to include a booze that actually tastes good.
Strong yet also smooth, light and balanced, French Summer tastes great after a hard day of work, or shopping.
1 ounce Cognac
1 ounce Lillet Blanc
1/2 ounce Tippler's Orange Liqueur
1/4 honey syrup
2 dashes orange bitters
2 dashes Angostura bitters
Add all ingredients to a cocktail mixing glass. Add ice — then more ice — and stir until well-chilled, about 30 seconds. Strain into a rocks glass over ice. Express an orange peel over your cocktail, twist and garnish.
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