It’s not everyday you get an email that is all that class and more. When I received an invitation from Bisquit to create my own cocktail with their truly inspirational VS Cognac, I really did not have to think on it too long. So I dug deep and started working out how I would make the sexiest cognac cocktail ever to grace our lips. I dug deep and discovered I wasn’t much of a professional mixologist but I sure loved experimenting with Cognac. And then we found something that worked for both of us. Tall, Dark & Handsome created a long drink of exceptional tastiness, thanks to the mixers from Fitch & Leedes. I found a way to make a beautiful Cognac cocktail that hit all my required taste marks and was sexy in the making.
I’m not gonna lie. It was messy. But there was FIRE and it was magic. Lemme tell you all about it.
The Tall, Dark & Handsome
The Tall, Dark & Handsome Long Drink
It seemed only right that the drink for him should be a tall drink (long drink) and represent his dark & handsome features. So once we discovered that his favourite mixer, with Cognac, would have to be the Fitch & Leedes Ginger Ale, it all fell nicely into place. Cocoa for dark? Check. Mixer for tall? Check. Bisquit Cognac for handsome? Check check check. TDH started his cocktail with a generous measure of Cognac and I topped it up with his perfect mixer, ginger ale. This required careful pouring as TDH had rimmed his glass with the juice of an orange and a cocoa & castor sugar mix. Touch that to your lips and you’ll love it, I guarantee. We added a slice of orange for more taste and flare.
The French Tart
The French Tart Cognac Cocktail
As the Jozi Food Whore, my cocktail could be nothing short of lascivious. But boy did we struggle to pull it off! A sugar cube, dusted in cocoa, doused in a bit of warm cognac, and lit on fire, all while delicately balanced on a glass of pure Bisquit VS Cognac. Add a slice or two of kumquat on the rim or dropped into the drink, for the required tartness. Cause … classy. But tarty! And fire! Yasss! The caramelised sugar and cocoa mixture that drips into the cocktail adds a hint of sweetness with a delicate dark chocolate bitterness, and changes the Cognac into a toasty dark drink. BUT, it turns out lighting a sugar cube and getting that caramelised sweetness to drip down in the glass is not as easy as you might think! But we got there. Hence two different glasses in the photos. Keep going at it and you’ll succeed. It’s worth the effort, I promise.
Enjoy it all with a bit of Lindt Orange Intense dark chocolate.
- The use of Cognac in cocktails goes back as far as the early 1800’s when the cocktail was invented – it was known as a “barman’s best friend”. Back in those days, pioneering mixologists only had a choice between brandy, gin or whisky. Brandy, particularly French Cognac, was extremely sought-after in America, where the cocktail culture was born. In fact, Cognac was a signature ingredient in some of America’s first-ever classic cocktails like the Sidecar and the original Sazerac.
- History of Cognac long drinks: Bisquit was the first cognac house to create a variant especially for mixing with water or soda water. After World War II, whisky consumption increased dramatically in France. To counteract this, the cellar master at the time created Bisquit ALO (Bisquit A L’Eau) meaning Bisquit with water. The other cognac houses were not convinced that this was a good move, but Bisquit was not deterred. In fact, they added a tagline – “Cognac A L’Eau n’est pas un cognac noyé” meaning Bisquit A L’Eau is not a bathed Cognac (or ‘watered down’ cognac). This move paid off and the variant was a great success for many years. In 1959, this popular variant was sold in a new hexagonal shaped bottle and marked No.1, thereby reinforcing its reputation as leader in the market at the time.