The first time I tried cognac the bottom of my mouth went completely numb.
It was late in the evening. I was working [drinking] with a batch of nearly newly minted consultants from around the world at our company's training camp [not a joke]. One of these people was from France. He loved cognac and wanted me to love it too.
I did not.
Until that point I had been cognac free and after that point, I decided, I would remain cognac free.
But then a few years passed.
And the other, more terrible tasting spirits I'd experimented with [grappa] burned off enough taste buds that by the time I accidentally tried cognac again I liked it. A lot.
Not as much as a spring-breaker loves tequila and "gettin' lit" [is that what the young kids call it?], but it was far better than I remembered.
Imagine bourbon didn't taste like licking a charred oak barrel [a fantasy of mine], add the subtlety of good wine, and you'll have cognac.
2 oz good cognac
Don't waste VSOP or XO in a cocktail, but use decent cognac, like anything mentioned in a rap song.
3/4 oz Cointreau
Some people prefer Grand Marnier.
3/4 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice
Do NOT buy the pre squeezed stuff
- Extra Credit: Fill your cocktail glass with ice and then fill with water. Alternatively, chill the cocktail glass in the freezer for at least 10 minutes.
- More Extra Credit: Your cocktail glassware should hold 4-6oz and no more. Any bigger and you look like you're serving drinks at Applebee's. Your drinks should also be 3-4oz including dilution. Any bigger and they'll get too warm before you finish.
- Add all ingredients to a mixing tin or pintglass full of ice. Any container will do. Get something clean that'll hold liquid and put all the ingredients in there. This isn't rocket science.
- Stir for at least 30-60 seconds. Use this time to chat up your dinner guest(s).
Yes, you can shake the drink, and some idiots will tell you that you HAVE to because it has citrus [you don't, that's why they're idiots], but shaking drinks makes them cloudy, and cloudy drinks are unsexy.
- Strain into a chilled cocktail glass [remember the extra credit from above?].