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This two ingredient drink is one of the easiest out there: the French connection cocktail! Equal parts Cognac and amaretto make a sophisticated slow-sipper.

French connection cocktail

Got 1 minute? Then you’ve got time to mix up a French Connection cocktail! Arguably the easiest cocktail on the planet, this slow-sipper features Cognac and amaretto in a perfect pairing. Serve it over ice and you’ve got a sophisticated drink that’s far greater than the sum of its parts. The amaretto gives it an almond essence that matches the strength of the Cognac. This one’s a favorite in our house! Here’s how to make it.

What’s in a French Connection cocktail?

The French Connection was invented in the 1970’s, named after the 1971 movie of the same name with Gene Hackman. It’s incredibly simple but full flavored: basically a fancy way to sip on Cognac. When Alex and I whipped it up, we were surprised at the amount of flavor in these two ingredients. The French Connection drink is on the list of International Bartender Association’s IBA official cocktails, meaning it has an “official” definition. The ingredients in a French Connection are equal parts:

  • Cognac
  • Amaretto
French connection cocktail

All about Cognac

Cognac is a type of French brandy, a liquor made from distilling wine. There are several grades of Cognac that shows how long it’s been aged:

  • VS or 3 stars (2 years)
  • VSOP (4 years)
  • Napoléon (6 years)
  • XO (10 years)

Bottles of XO can be upwards of $200! No need to go that high-end, of course. For the French Connection cocktail, you can use a mid-priced VS or VSOP Cognac. Other drinks that use Cognac? Try cognac cocktails like tangy Classic Sidecar, simple Stinger, boozy Between the Sheets, or classic Sazerac.


What is amaretto?

Amaretto is an almond liqueur that originates from Italy. It has a distinctive almond flavor, and tastes both sweet and bitter at once (amaretto means in Italian “little bitter”). You may know the flavor from the popular amaretto cookies, a popular Italian sweet.

It’s worth getting a bottle for your shelf: you can use it in cocktails and in cooking, especially desserts! Other drinks that use amaretto? Try more amaretto cocktails like the Amaretto Sour, Godfather, Amaretto Stone Sour, Amaretto Coffee, or Italian Margarita.

More two ingredient cocktails

The French Connection cocktail is part of a family of two ingredient cocktails that take no time to whip up! Some of the most famous classic cocktails have just two ingredients. Often as with the French Connection you don’t even need to shake them: just stir together in a glass. Here are some more famous easy two ingredient cocktails:

French Connection cocktail

When to serve a French Connection cocktail

The French Connection is so easy, it’s ideal for unannounced guests or impromptu gatherings! Try it as a:

  • Happy hour drink
  • Before dinner drink
  • Late night drinks drink
  • Cocktail hour drink
  • Guys or girls night drink
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French connection cocktail

French Connection Cocktail (2 Ingredients!)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x


This two ingredient drink is one of the easiest out there: the French connection cocktail! Equal parts Cognac and amaretto make a sophisticated slow-sipper.


  • 1 ½ ounces (3 tablespoons) Cognac
  • 1 ½ ounces (3 tablespoons) amaretto liqueur
  • Ice, to serve (try clear ice!)


  1. Add ice to lowball or Old Fashioned glass.
  2. Pour the Cognac and amaretto over the ice. Stir gently to combine.
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Cocktails
  • Diet: Vegan

Keywords: French Connection cocktail

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you’ll want to make again and again.

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