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  1. #1
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    Sazerac. Some essential questions.

    Hi all!

    Is the "Sazerac" really the first american cocktail?
    And how is the original recipe?
    Are all the original ingredients still available today?
    Where is the big difference to an old fashioned?

    I can't find anything really informative on the web, so it would be nice if you could help my out a bit!

    Cheers
    "With your bitch slap rappin' and your cocaine tongue, you get nothin' done"

  2. #2

    Re: Sazerac. Some essential questions.

    Not sure if the first, but was made around the 1830s in New Orleans. First recorded by Thomas H. Handy when he owned the Sazerac House. Authorship is sometimes also attributed to Antoine Peychaud (of the bitters). The difference to an old fashioned is the addition of Absinthe or Pastis. The recipe is unchanged (though I like to add angostura bitters as well):

    Makes 1 cocktail
    1 tablespoon 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
    1 lemon twist with the white pith removed, for garnish

    You put ice and Herbsaint into one OF glass and swirl it around. Make the rest of the drink (minus the lemon) in a second OF glass. Throw out the ice and herbsaint, leaving you with a cooled and Herbsaint-rinsed glass. Pour contents of the second OF glass into the first and garnish.

  3. #3
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    Re: Sazerac. Some essential questions.

    As an historical note Sven the original Sazeracl recipe called for brandy rather than whisky. Eventually the brandy was replaced by rye.

  4. #4
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    Re: Sazerac. Some essential questions.

    Thanks so much!
    I'm trying to write a blog entry for the german folks interested in bourbon on my blog, and especially cocktails, the oldschool way.
    So I wanted to start with the Sazerac, then on to the Mint Julep and so on ...

    Again, thank you!
    "With your bitch slap rappin' and your cocaine tongue, you get nothin' done"

  5. #5
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    Re: Sazerac. Some essential questions.

    Not to jump too far ahead but you mentioned Julep. It's really a style rather than a specific drink, Jack Daniels, founder of the distillery of that name, liked his julep made with basil rather than mint.

  6. #6
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    Re: Sazerac. Some essential questions.

    I suggest that a read of Professor Wondrich's book Imbibe might prove informative. His chapter on cocktails and crustas devotes quite some pages to the history of the cocktail and in his opinion the first American cocktail was indeed just that, the "Cock tail", that first appeared in print in the early 1800's (see page 177). This was long before the term cocktail came to mean most any distilled spirits drink and is now most closely related to what we call the "Old Fashioned" today (the "Old Fashioned" name meaning the old fashioned cocktail).

    The Sazerac is also discussed but was not in his opinion the first Cocktail which he states rather emphatically on page 200.

    His opinion of course but one that is generally well regarded. He does rather thoughtfully include the Sazerac recipe, as made by Tom Handy, on the top of page 201. This recipe is from 1908 although this version of it likely dates from at least the 1880's. The brandy version (traditionally cognac) as noted is much earlier than that. Antoine Peychaud created his bitters in 1830 and no doubt a version of the Sazerac appeared not long afterwards.

    He also notes that Dale DeGroff likes to use both rye AND cognac in his Sazerac!
    That yella whiskey runnin' down my throat like honey dew vine water and I took another slash…

    Nullum Gratuitum Prandium
    Ne Illegitimi Carborundum

  7. #7
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    Re: Sazerac. Some essential questions.

    Thanks! I just can get this book: http://www.amazon.de/Imbibe-Professo.../dp/0399532870
    Hopefully this is the Imbibe! you meant. I guess it is rather a compilation, but I don't mind, as long as information is provided.
    Thanks all!
    "With your bitch slap rappin' and your cocaine tongue, you get nothin' done"

  8. #8
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    Re: Sazerac. Some essential questions.

    Until about 7-8 years ago, the Sazerac cocktail was rarely seen outside of New Orleans, and even then there were few places in the city that would know how to make one. However, when you could find someone that would make one, they generally did a good job. I learned how to make them from watching Mario at the Napoleon House on Royal Street.

    I like to make mine with a sugar cube and chill the drink before I put it into the chilled glass. I just pour the rye over a large cube, no stirring.

    Unfortunately, with the popularity of the drink, there are more people that do a bad job of it than good. I've even seen them shake a batch of them at the Sazerac bar, which is named after the cocktail. Sacrilege!

  9. #9

    Re: Sazerac. Some essential questions.

    Quote Originally Posted by squire View Post
    As an historical note Sven the original Sazeracl recipe called for brandy rather than whisky. Eventually the brandy was replaced by rye.

    I think the cool thing about this is the reason. Pre phylloxera (the louse that temporarily destroyed the wine industry in Europe), Scotch and American whiskies were considered overall inferior to brandy. But for a louse, we might be brandy enthusiasts. Also Sazerac was the name of the cognac thought originally to be used in the drink (Sazerac-de-Forge & Fils).

  10. #10
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    Re: Sazerac. Some essential questions.

    Quote Originally Posted by stiffchainey View Post
    Thanks! I just can get this book: http://www.amazon.de/Imbibe-Professo.../dp/0399532870
    Hopefully this is the Imbibe! you meant. I guess it is rather a compilation, but I don't mind, as long as information is provided.
    Thanks all!
    That is indeed the book and I highly recommend it! That lousy louse that nearly killed cognac and the original Sazerac cognac that lent its name to the drink that Whiskeyobsessive notes are both noted in the book, along with a plethora of other little known and obscure details about the history of cocktails.
    That yella whiskey runnin' down my throat like honey dew vine water and I took another slash…

    Nullum Gratuitum Prandium
    Ne Illegitimi Carborundum

 

 

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