January 17, 2016

Claret Cordial

aka Cordial Medoc

By In Articles, Cocktails
I spotted a reference to Claret Cordial (or rather Medoc Cordial) in a reprint of an old cocktail book. A search brought up a list of webpages announcing that it was no longer being made joining the likes of Hercules and Caperitif*; products now defunct and forgotten. Yet on The Whisky Exchange website there it was listed – Jourde Cordial Medoc at £26.45 for a 500ml bottle.

This Cordial-Medoc from Jourde is a brandy-based liqueur flavoured with fruits and herbs, and said to taste of orange and raspberry with a spicy complexity. Sadly, Cordial Medoc is no longer produced, so these bottles are becoming rather scarce.

So what is Cordial Medoc? According to the (rather dated) company website the original Cordial Médoc liqueur has been produced since 1878 by G. A. Jourde company in Bordeaux, using, as all great liqueurs do “a secret family recipe”. The cordial contains more than then 15 different fruits, spices, and herbs including Orange (which is the predominant flavour and aroma) cocoa beans from Curacao, plus vanilla, violets, and prunes. These fruits and spices are macerated in a cognac based spirit, which is then re-distilled in old Copper Pot-Stills. This is then blended with an Eau de Vie made from wines from Médoc.

You could drink it on its own, fully chilled, as a liqueur. Its fine, sweet and flavoursome. It is better, perhaps, as an addition to carious cocktails. The Western Electirc is perhaps my favourite of those cocktail recipes listed below; there is a depth and complexity that makes for a fine drink; perfect for a celebratory breakfast or brunch. Late at night works for me too.

Cordial Médoc / Claret Cordial

Cordial Médoc / Claret Cordial

Claret Cordial or Cordial Medoc Cocktail Recipes

Western Electric Cocktail from Cafe Royal Cocktail Book
20ml Cordial Médoc / Claret Cordial
20ml Cointreau
20ml Cognac
3 dashes Maraschino Liqueur

Shake first four ingredients with ice and pour into a tumbler. Top up with Champagne. Garnish with Luxardo Maraschino cherries.

Western Electric Cocktail

Huntress Cocktail
10ml Vodka
10ml Fresh Orange Juice
10ml Cordial Médoc / Claret Cordial

Stir first three ingredients with ice. Top up with Champagne. Decorate with a slither of orange peel.

Huntress Cocktail

Lotus Blossom Cocktail
30ml London Dry Gin
30ml Cordial Médoc / Claret Cordial
15ml Vermouth
15ml Fresh Orange Juice
Shake all ingredients with ice. Strain into a cocktail glass. Decorate with a slice of candid orange.

Katinka Cocktail

45ml gin
15ml Cordial Médoc / Claret Cordial
15ml yellow Chartreuse
Dash angostura bitters
Shake all ingredients with ice before straining into a chilled glass.

Katinka Cocktail with Cordial Médoc / Claret Cordial

*Hercules was a British sweetened anis-flavored absinthe, say some, others maintain it was a red wine aperitif similar to vermouth but spiced with yerba mate and herbs. Caperitif was a cocktail mixer used in the 1920’s as an ingredient for “South African” cocktails. Apparently similar to Lillet Blanc. Caperitif is apparently ‘back’. I cant wait to try it.

Closeup Western Electric Cocktail


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Top :: Comments

  1. Rosana @ Hot&CHilli Food and Travel Blog January 18, 2016

    Is there a substitute for Cordial Médoc / Claret Cordial. Is it easy to try to make it at home? R

    • Andrew January 19, 2016

      Not that I am aware of – the answer is to buy one of the last remaining bottles!

  2. Meeta January 20, 2016

    The huntress is my cocktail. Seriously we need to get back together and you get to make us drinks 🙂


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