Here's the official drink of New Orleans, made so by a vote of the Louisiana legislature in June. The traditional version calls for Sazerac rye whiskey (though any rye works fine) and Herbsaint, an absinthe substitute from New Orleans. Now that real absinthe is available in the United States, Spirits columnist Jason Wilson recommends using it for this cocktail. Make sure to always use Peychaud's bitters.
Also, tradition be damned: Please feel free to enjoy this cocktail with an ice cube or two.
- 1 sugar cube
- 3 dashes Peychaud's bitters
- 1 1/2 ounces rye whiskey
- 1/4 ounce absinthe (may substitute Pernod)
- Twist of lemon peel, for garnish
Pack an old-fashioned glass with ice to chill it down.
Combine the sugar cube and bitters in a separate old-fashioned glass; muddle until the sugar dissolves. Add the rye whiskey and an ice cube; stir to mix well.
Discard the ice from the packed old-fashioned glass; add the absinthe just to coat the chilled glass, pouring out any that remains. Strain the whiskey-sugar mixture into the chilled glass. Twist the lemon peel over the drink, rub it around the rim of the glass, then use it as a garnish.
Adapted from the "official" recipe served at the Tales of the Cocktail conference in New Orleans in July.
Tested by Michael Taylor.
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