You might not be familiar with the Sazerac – but that isn’t because it is a new drink. In fact, it has been called the “oldest American cocktail” and traces its origins back to pre–Civil War New Orleans. The cocktail is traditionally made with cognac or rye whiskey and has an unusual preparation that gives it a slightly sweet, herbal flavor that adds a little extra character to even a very good whiskey.
2 oz. Rye Whiskey
1/2 oz. Simple Syrup
4 Dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
Splash of Absinthe*
Start with two Old-Fashioned glasses. Fill one of the glasses with ice and set it aside to chill. After the glass is chilled, pour in the the absinthe and swirl it around to coat the inside of the glass. When the inside of the glass is coated pour out the excess absinthe. Now pour the whiskey, simple syrup and bitters into the second glass. Fill with ice and stir until chilled. Strain into the chilled, absinthe-coated glass. Squeeze a lemon peel over the drink and drop it in or discard it.
*Absinthe can be substituted with Herbsaint or a pastis like Ricard or Pernod…if you must.