Zachary Shega (Chief Operating Officer)
-2oz Cognac or aged brandy
-2oz crème liquor or other cream drink (ex. eggnog)
-Nutmeg, allspice, or pumpkin spice sprinkle for added flavor
-OPTIONAL Whipped cream dollop
As the season of dessert drinks approaches, the Brandy Alexander makes a fine addition to any party cocktail selection. Simple to make, great tasting, open to variation, or sure to please most drinkers, the Brandy Alexander is almost a perfect drink for the aspiring bartender.
In a cocktail glass or tumbler, pour the brandy. The amount of brandy is actually not important, although too much can overpower the rest of the drink. Over the brandy, pour the desired cream beverage. Be aware, with all alcohol/cream combinations, there is a small chance the cream can curdle. One way to mitigate some of this risk is to pour the cream over the back of a spoon so it mixes more gently with the brandy. Although the traditional recipe for a Brandy Alexander calls for shaking the ingredients over ice, that is only to chill it. If desired, add the whipped cream at this stage, but if not, sprinkle the spice(s) over top and serve!
The drink is actually a very old recipe, stemming from the 1920s. The brandy Alexander is simply an evolution of the Alexander drink family though. For connoisseurs desiring something other than brandy, the original Alexander, as history tells, was made from gin. However, scotch, whiskey/whisky, rye, and most other hard alcohols less likely to curdle the cream have been used. Variations in cream or crème are just as wide, from Kalua to eggnog and Bailey’s to simple whipping cream, again, purely to the taste of the consumer.
All in all, the Alexander is a wonderful drink for after meals as a light dessert. Perhaps its strongest asset is the flexibility in ingredients, helping it become a party favorite regardless who attends!