Master of Cocktails Brandy Crusta

Right then ladies and gentlemen. Time for week’s #MasterofCocktails, featuring a Brandy Crusta recipe – a real life classic. This is a smashing drink, first brought to my attention by the superb @AdamsBitters.

Before we get started, here are 2 tips on the Brandy Crusta:

1) Drink more of them.

2) Don’t order one in a bar where it’s not on the menu.

Got it? Good. The key to this drink is the garnish, which we will be preparing a couple of hours in advance before actually putting the drink together.

Master of Cocktails Brandy Crusta Ingredients

List of Ingredients

As I said, an absolutely huge part of this drink is the garnish – basically a whole lemon with the ends cut off, hollowed out.

So – find yourself a lemon, and a glass that it fits into very snugly. Thus.

Master of Cocktails Lemon Glass

Snug. See.

Master of Cocktails Lemon Glass

Start by whipping both ends off it…

Master of Cocktails Endless Lemon

Now completely hollow it out. Remove all the flesh, so you’re just left with the pith and peel.

Master of Cocktails Hollow Lemon

Take the hollowed lemon and really jam it into the glass. You’re going to be drinking *through* the garnish…

Master of Cocktails Lemon Glass

…so do make sure it’s completely watertight if you can.

Next, you’re going to need to grab a small plate, and tip some sugar syrup into it.

Master of Cocktails Lemon Sugar

Roll the whole garnish, and the top of the glass in the syrup, then dip it into caster sugar.

Master of Cocktails Lemon Sugar

Pay special attention to the join between the glass and the lemon – use the sugar like caulk.

And there you have it – all ready, it’ll need a couple of hours to harden.

Master of Cocktails Brandy Crusta Garnish

After a couple of hours, here it is.

Master of Cocktails Brandy Crusta Garnish

From here, it’s very simple really. Start with 40ml of Cognac. I’m using the excellent Hine Rare VSOP Cognac.

Master of Cocktails Hine Cognac

That goes into a shaker, followed by 20ml Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao.

Master of Cocktails Curacao

Then 10ml Fresh Lemon Juice…

Master of Cocktails Lemon Juice

And 2 good dashes of Angostura Bitters.

Master of Cocktails Angostura Bitters

Now pack the shaker with ice, and give it a good 30 seconds…

Master of Cocktails Ice

Single strain (we’ve not frozen the glass) into the finished glass…

Master of Cocktails Strain

And before serving, express a lemon peel over the top. Trust me on this last bit.

Master of Cocktails Lemon Glass

The Brandy Crusta. Fancy.

Master of Cocktails Lemon Glass




Tune in on Sunday, where we will be using these ingredients for more #MasterofCocktails excitement.

Master of Cocktails Strain

Next week, you’ll be needing these…
Old Tom Gin, Noilly Prat Original Dry, Bénédictine D.O.M. Liqueur, Regan’s Orange Bitters No. 6 and an Orange.