Monday, June 30, 2008

Sazerac: the cocktail of New Orleans

Sazerac, the official cocktail of New Orleans, as voted by the Louisiana House of Representatives, is a famed mix of rye whiskey, bitters and absinthe that originated in the bayou.

The drink's origins date back to the 1830s, when a Creole apothecary named Antoine Peychaud concocted a potent recipe at his pharmacy in the French Quarter. Peychaud combined his family's secret recipe for bitters with cognac and began serving the drink to friends.

Although the Sazerac can be found across New Orleans' drinking establishments, Peychaud's bitters remain the key to creating this iconic cocktail.

"Do have just one, as you won't be nearly as attractive as you think you are after two."

— Ti Adelaide Martin

Makes 1 cocktail

1 tablespoon absinthe or Herbsaint
1 1/2 ounces rye whiskey, preferably Old Overholt or Sazerac rye
1/2 teaspoon simple syrup
4 to 5 dashes Peychaud's bitters
2 dashes Angostura bitters
1 lemon twist with the white pith removed, for garnish

Pour the absinthe into a rocks glass and swirl to coat the inside. Discard any excess absinthe. Fill the glass with ice to chill.

Combine the rye, simple syrup and Peychaud's and Angostura bitters in a cocktail shaker with ice. Cover and stir vigorously to chill.

Discard the ice from the glass and strain the shaker mixture into the glass. Rub the rim of the glass with the lemon twist, add to the drink and serve immediately.



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