We are on Day 7 of the Let’s Get Blitzen: Cocktail Advent Calendar and I’m serving up the Polar Express cocktail. This cocktail is a boozier version of the Champs-Élysées cocktail, which if you’re not familiar, is a riff on the classic Sidecar.
The sidecar happens to be one of my favourite classic cocktails – typically prepared with cognac, Cointreau, and lemon juice. The Champs-Élysées varies from the Sidecar with the use of Green Chartreuse, a liqueur with intense floral and herbal notes, in place of Cointreau. This spin is a bit boozier than the original recipe and I’ve used Black Walnut bitters instead of Angostura.
I’m quite partial to the combination of lemon and black walnut flavours – I put them in combination in the Walnut Grove cocktail a few months ago.
I road-tested this cocktail on a few of my friends last night, (yes, last night) and they all approved it unanimously.
We have gotten to the fun part of the Let’s Get Blitzen: Cocktail Advent Calendar where I’m flying by the seat of my pants. You’ll see that I’m publishing this post at 11 a.m. as opposed to 6 a.m. which is the time that prescheduled posts go out.
That means, I have no other content developed for tomorrow, the next day, or the day after that. Hot take: wouldn’t recommend this approach to an editorial calendar – or total lack thereof.
As a result, I’ll be mixing up a fair few drinks this weekend. I have my book club Christmas party this evening so I’ll probably show up with a good tilt on.
Also, expecting my friend Kayla to help me drink some of whatever I create tomorrow. From eggnog to hot chocolate to mulled wine, it’s going to be a good time – our stomachs will punish us later.
- 2 oz cognac
- ½ oz green Chartreuse
- ¾ oz lemon juice
- ½ oz simple syrup
- 1 dash Black Walnut bitters
- 1 lemon peel, for garnish
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup sugar
Shake all the ingredients with ice, then strain into a coupe. Garnish with the lemon twist.
Add sugar and water to a small saucepan. Heat over medium-high heat. Stirring occasionally until sugar is dissolved. Cool to room temperature before using. Simple syrup will keep, refrigerated in an air-tight container, for up to two weeks.
Recipe adapted from: Kaplan, David and Nick Fauchauld. “Champs-Élysées.” Death & Co.: Modern Classic Cocktails. Berkeley: Ten Speed Press, 2014.