Bar Fly: Brandy Crusta


As serious cocktail kingdoms become common around town, who among us doesn’t feel a tinge of pressure to measure up? A Sazerac will get you through, but to knock it out of the park consider the Brandy Crusta.

Its pedigree is flawless: birthed before the Civil War, it’s name-checked in both Jerry Thomas’s Bon Vivant’s Companion and Harry Craddock’s Savoy Cocktail Book (the equivalent of making both the Old and New Testaments).

More important: it’s tasty, evoking its descendant, the Sidecar. Originally, cognac was used, but it’s a bit pricey for drinks these days and proper orange curaçao is murder to find here. The garnish, however, is not to be messed with-the circle of lemon is this drink’s calling card and will mark you from across the room as a person of exceptional taste.

2 oz. brandy (Torres works)
1 tsp. orange curaçao
(Grand Marnier or even Cointreau will do)
1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. simple syrup
2 dashes Bittered Sling Plum
and Rootbeer Bitters
1 lemon peel, 3 cm by 10 cm

Place brandy, liqueur, lemon juice, simple syrup,
and bitters in cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake. Strain into a wine or cordial glass;
arrange lemon peel into a circle and place on top.

 Up Next Pinot Noir 2013