The Rémy Martin Sidecar Competition Returns: Are You Up for the Challenge?

Enter the Rémy Martin Bartender Talent Academy Sidecar Cocktail Competition here!

There’s something to be said about the allure of a mystery. When it comes to the Sidecar, a masterful blend of Cognac, triple sec, and lemon juice, differing tales of the cocktail’s origin have followed it through its century-long reign as a classic. One ounce of Rémy Cognac or two? To sugar the rim or not to sugar the rim? These are the questions that keep us daydreaming. 

And what about the future of the Sidecar? Rémy Martin and the Bartender Talent Academy have teamed up to ask that very question — and they’re leaving the answer up to you.

Reinvent the Sidecar With Style

Rémy Martin Sidecar Cocktail Competition

Throughout the ages, while many cocktails have come in and out of fashion, the Sidecar has remained. For bartenders, the Sidecar Competition offers the chance to develop riffs on the classic cocktail that will endure for another century — no mystery required.

Inspired by one of three distinct eras — the Golden Age of the 1920s, the Disco Era of the 1970s, and the Modern Era — competitors will create one recipe influenced by emblematic aspects of the age they’ve chosen. Judges will choose five competitors from each region — New York City, Miami, Dallas, Chicago, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, to move on to the U.S. finals. Bartenders must be 21 or over and must be residents of the United States. (Click here to read the rest of the rules to make sure you’re eligible to compete.)

Who knew a cocktail shaker could double as a time machine? To find out which era is right for your Sidecar, keep reading.

The Golden Age

Sidecars evocative of the Golden Age should implement classic cocktail concepts and evoke the opulence and grandeur of the Roaring Twenties: think “The Great Gatsby,” Art Deco, and Duke Ellington. 

The Disco Era

If you’re inclined to platform shoes and shag carpets and often imagine yourself dancing the night away at Studio 54, try out a Disco Era Sidecar recipe. These submissions should be kitschy, lively, colorful, and emblematic of the self-expression the ‘70s encouraged.

The Modern Era

For bartenders who would rather remain planted firmly in the present, consider submitting a Sidecar recipe characteristic of the Modern Era. These contemporary cocktails should showcase the best of current mixology trends, like minimalism, sustainability, and locally sourced ingredients, for example. 

The Journey to Cognac, France

Rémy Martin Sidecar Cocktail Competition

No matter which iconic age inspires you, the Rémy Martin Bartender Talent Academy Sidecar Competition offers the chance for cocktail aficionados to not only get creative with a classic serve but also provides the opportunity to catapult their careers — not to mention trips to both New York City and France, plus cash prizes. Sounds pretty nice, right? 

Once regional competitors have been selected, the top five finalists from each region will move on to the Regional Finals held in New York City, Miami, Dallas, Chicago, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. There, contestants will provide a live demonstration of their Sidecar reinterpretation and the inspiration behind it.

One winner will be selected from each region and receive a trip to New York City for the National Finals Competition. From there, a U.S. winner will be crowned before moving on to the Global Finals Competition in France.

The Global Finals Competition will narrow down the finalists and provide cash prizes for the three finalists: 1,000 euros for third place, 2,000 euros for second place, and 3,000 euros for first place. 

One Cocktail Can Change Your Life

Not convinced yet? Take it from Karen Grill, the winner of the 2018 Sidecar Competition.  

“Cocktail competitions are a wonderful way of challenging your creativity and opening yourself up to new possibilities,” Grill says. “Through this competition, I discovered new cocktail techniques, made great friends, and was given the opportunity to travel. All it takes is one cocktail and it could change your life.”

For Grill, that was certainly the case. The trip to Cognac offered her the chance to see what Rémy Martin is all about firsthand, helping her realize that she wanted to be a part of it. 

“Since winning, I began my role as a Rémy-Cointreau portfolio brand ambassador with Collectif 1806 and ultimately landed in my dream job as the director of Collectif 1806 where I now have the pleasure of producing this competition with the experience of a competitor who went through it. Like I said, one cocktail could change your life!” 

No matter the outcome, the Bartender Talent Academy is an experience that is truly special. You’ll never know what can happen until you submit your Sidecar. 

The article is sponsored by Rémy Martin. Enter the Rémy Martin Bartender Talent Academy Sidecar Cocktail Competition here!