In 2008 the Sazerac was named as the official state cocktail of Louisiana, so we’re not kidding when we say that we have one of the best Sazeracs in New Orleans! Regarded for its sharp and mature undertones, sip on this elegant cocktail and let yourself be taken back to the grand days of our city.
Known as America’s first cocktail, the Sazerac cocktail was believed to be invented in New Orleans in 1838 by the apothecary Antoine Peychaud. From his pharmacy shop on 437 Royal Street, his original Sazerac recipe simply included cognac and his own concoction: an herbal blend of bitters that he called Peychaud’s Bitters. The cocktail’s name is derived from Peychaud’s preferred French cognac brandy, the Sazerac-de-Forge et Fils. The drink began to get popular at the Sazerac Coffee House in New Orleans, and along the years the cognac got replaced with American rye whiskey as cognac supplies dwindled due to a blight in Europe that wrecked vineyards. In 1873, the bartender Leon Lamothe decided to add a dash of absinthe to the cocktail, however absinthe was later temporarily banned to due to its hallucinogenic effects. An anise-flavored spirit called Pastis was used instead and is still known today as a great alternative to absinthe.
Although the Sazerac requires fairly little ingredients compared to other cocktails, making one is more complex and requires some practice and patience to fully display its sheer glory. For a true Sazerac experience we highly recommend that you come over and visit us, but for those who’d like to test their bartending skills at home, here are some pointers from us on how to make a Sazerac:
- The proper glass is important to fully appreciate the drink. We like to use a chilled Old Fashioned glass as it’s perfect for swirling the drink around to let it breathe.
- Stir, not shake! A true Sazerac is never with a foamy top, and gently stirring the liquid and ice will create a clear and strong flavor.
- Speaking of stirring, the duration of this will greatly affect how diluted your drink will be. For beginners, we suggest tasting the drink as you stir so that it gives you a better idea on what tastes the most balanced to you.
- The Sazerac cocktail may look small, but it is definitely mighty! Remember to sip slowly to savor and unpack its layers of brilliance.