Whiskey Sidecar

We are now deep into Brown Liquor Season, and this year I was determined to develop a perfect whiskey sidecar recipe for home use.

By "home use," I mean there will be a tradeoff between simplicity and fidelity to the Platonic Form. At a nice bar, you'd expect to see Cointreau or maybe Grand Marnier involved, along with simple syrup and some mix of citrus juices that were hand-squeezed earlier in the day. At home, though, prep time and fresh ingredients are a luxury I can't always afford.

Herewith is my recipe for the season, which hits the sweet spot of minimal ingredients, relatively quick prep, and (most importantly) a good, balanced taste:
  1. Add 2 oz. hot tap water to an empty pint glass.
  2. Stir in a tablespoon (as in, the larger of the two spoons in your flatware set - not a perfectly level, scientifically calibrated measuring spoonful) of sugar. Stir until the sugar is dissolved.
  3. Add 3 oz. Maker's Mark to the glass, and stir.
  4. Add the juice of 1/4 lemon, stir again.
  5. Fill the glass with enough ice to cover the liquid and stir one last time.
  6. Strain into a tumbler or rocks glass, ideally over a big hunk of ice.
  7. Tell the kids to pipe down, and Enjoy!
A friend pointed out that this is really just an Old Fashioned without the bitters. Maybe so, and I can't seem to find a good reference that identifies the distinguishing characteristics of a sidecar, but I like it.