Two cocktails which combine brandy and rum are the ‘Bolero’ and ‘Between the Sheets’. Gold label rum is rather better in combination with brandy than is white label.

Between the Sheets – David Embury

3 Parts Brandy

3 Parts Cuban Rum

2 parts Lime Juice

1 Part Cointreau or Triple sec

Shake with crushed ice. A twist of lemon over each glass.

This drink is sometimes made with brandy only, and sometimes with rum and gin. Also lemon is sometimes used in place of lime. The above, is in my opinion, the best of the many recipes I have seen.

I can remember in my first job in a bar in 1992 being amazed that bartenders could remember lots of cocktails, and never look shaken no matter which one they were asked for. I wanted to learn these amazing drinks from day one, and asked my friend who had helped get me the job to lend a hand. He wrote down a dozen or so drinks which we made at the bar, and I did my best to learn them. This was one of those drinks.

I’ve known how to make this drink for 26 years, no-one has ever asked me for one, and I’ve never even made one out of curiosity. I can remember a few years ago assuming this was a 70’s or 80’s drink which just lost favour, so it was interested to see this tucked away in Embury. Reading more it goes right back to the 1920’s and one charming story attributes it to prostitutes drinking this in French brothels as an aperitif, it didn’t say for what.

This drink is a little sweeter than most Embury sours, and is still a lot drier than classic recipes (IBA). It works nicely with less Cointreau, and the flavour still comes through. I would keep Embury’s ratios.