Wet Bar Wednesday – Sazerac

Like food, the variety of alcohol traditions and options is stunning and beautiful.

Monday night I was out with colleagues for dinner after the first day of a seminar we’re attending.  It has been the tradition over the last four years for a few of us to gather with the presenter for dinner and drinks after the first day’s session.  While we went to a place known for its wide selection of artisan beers, I hate beer.  Fortunately they also had a full bar, and I opted for a Sazerac.

I remember reading about Sazerac in the distant past, but couldn’t remember the details.  What I discovered by experience is that it’s delicious.  What I learned by researching after the experience is that it is held by many to be America’s first indigenous cocktail.  It hails from New Orleans, where once upon a time it referred to a particular cognac or whiskey brand, Sazerac,  that was the main ingredient.

These days, it is a combination of bourbon or rye, absinthe (now that it is available in the US again after an eighty-five year ban), and a particular brand of bitters, Peychaud’s, that is associated with New Orleans (and a product of the Sazerac company).   While I haven’t made this for myself (I need to get a few ingredients – primarily absinthe), here’s a recipe that looks close to what I might have had Monday night:

  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 dashes Peychaud bitters
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 1.5 oz rye whiskey (you can use other bourbons – I think the one I had used Bulleit)
  • 1 dash of absinthe
  • 1 lemon peel
  • ice

Get two glasses.  Fill one with ice to chill the glass.  In the other glass dissolve the sugar into the bitters, then add ice to chill.

In the first glass, dump out/set aside the ice.  Splash absinthe in the glass and swirl it until the entire inside of the glass has been coated.  Discard any excess absinthe.  Into the absinthe-coated glass now add the rye whiskey or bourbon as well as the dissolved sugar & bitter mixture.  Stir well and add in the lemon peel.  Serve straight up (no ice).  Enjoy!


2 Responses to “Wet Bar Wednesday – Sazerac”

  1. Wet Bar Wednesday – Sazerac | Living Apologetics Says:

    […] had forgotten that I had tried a sazerac not quite a year ago.  But I’m fairly positive that what I had back then was not nearly as good as the ones I […]

  2. Wet Bar Wednesday – La Paloma | Living Apologetics Says:

    […] Crafting delicious cocktails can be a lot of fun, but it can also lead to a certain snobbery.  What, after all, is a basic rum and Coke (never Pepsi!) compared to a beautifully balanced Sazerac (here is my version, and here’s another)? […]

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