As you peruse the brandy aisle at Total Wine & More in Puyallup or Federal Way, you’ll probably do a double-take when you pass the Clear Creek Distillery Pear Brandy bottles. At first glance, you might think the distillers created a clever trompe-l’oeil on their label, until you take a closer look and realize — yes — that is actually a whole ripe pear inside it.
Clear Creek has mastered the Alsatian bottling technique, where young pear-tree branches (still growing on the tree) are slid inside glass bottles and left to dangle like ornaments as a pear grows inside. Once the pear matures, the bottle is cut loose from the tree and filled with brandy (it takes a hefty 20 pounds of pears to distill into one bottle of brandy).
Pear Brandy Sidecar
Recipe courtesy of The Park Kitchen, Portland
- Granulated sugar (to dust glass rims)
- Lemon slice
- 1½ ounces Clear Creek Pear Brandy
- 1-ounce Cointreau
- Juice of 1 lime and 1 orange
- 1 ounce simple syrup (1 part sugar dissolved in 1 part water)
Wet the rim of a martini glass with the juice of a lemon slice, then dip the rim into a plate of sugar; set aside. Add brandy, Cointreau, the juice of 1 lime and 1 orange, and simple syrup into a shaker. Shake until frothy, strain, and pour into the prepared martini glass.