Tonight’s Cocktail

Before I get started, note the Buffalo Trace Experimental Collection I picked up today in the picture. It has nothing to do with tonight’s cocktail, but it looks good huh! Excited about that.

I’m usually a classic cocktail kind of guy if ever I stray for my bourbon neat, but tonight I decided to mix it up. Tonight’s cocktail comes from the quintessential NY cocktail bar Death & Company. It wasn’t too bad for a relaxing night of TV with my bestie, watching my new favorite Netflix series Killings.   Although very tasty, I felt like it was a little complex for a home cocktail. It felt  like I should have been enjoying it in the company of friends at my favorite speakeasy to be Swordfish Cocktail Club or some other classic cocktail bar like Restaurant 17 in Travelers Rest.  My friend Steven is the bartender over there and he makes an insane Smoked Rosemary Negroni.  Stop in, enjoy one and tell him I said hello. The food is pretty impressive too.  Below is the Sazerac recipe  I used along with a little history on the cocktail.  Cheers…

Sazerac Cocktail (Death & Company)

  • Absinthe (Vieux Pontarlier)
  • 1 1/2 oz Rye (Rittenhouse 100 – Great, reasonably priced rye)
  • 1/2 oz Cognac (Pierre Ferrand 1840)
  • 1 tsp Demerara Syrup (Made my own)
  • 4 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters (I Love this)
  • 1 dash Angostura Bitters

Rinse a rocks glass with absinthe and dump, or spray with an atomizer.  Stir the rest of the ingredients with ice then strain into your glass.  Squeeze a lemon twist over the drink and discard.

History of the Sazerac Cocktail

In 1838, Antoine Amedie Peychaud, owner of a New Orleans apothecary, treated his friends to brandy toddies of his own recipe, including his “Peychaud’s Bitters,” made from a secret family recipe. The toddies were made using a double-ended egg cup as a measuring cup or jigger, then known as a “coquetier” (pronounced “ko-k-tay”), from which the word “cocktail” was derived. Thus, the world’s first cocktail was born!

By 1850, the Sazerac Cocktail, made with Sazerac French brandy and Peychaud’s Bitters, was immensely popular, and became the first “branded” cocktail. In 1873, the recipe for the Sazerac Cocktail was altered to replace the French brandy with American Rye whiskey, and a dash of absinthe was added.

In 1933, the Sazerac Cocktail was bottled and marketed by the Sazerac Company of New Orleans. That same year, “Herbsaint,” a pastis, was made according to a French recipe; “Herbsaint” was so named for the New Orleans term for wormwood – “Herb Sainte.”

In 1940, the Official Sazerac Cocktail recipe was modified to use Herbsaint as the absinthe.

Finally, in 2000, the Official Sazerac Cocktail recipe was modified to use Sazerac Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey.


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