by Darcy O'Neil on March 2011
Last year I drank Sazerac's, this year it seemed Vieux Carré's were my drink of choice. New Orleans has such an interesting history, especially as the birth place of the cocktail. But, finding a good cocktail in New Orleans can be a task. Forget Bourbon Street, except for a rare few establishments. Some other places in the French Quarter offer potential, but aside from this one particular week, most visitors to New Orleans are looking for anything but complex cocktails. So the general advice is pick your cocktail carefully.
Now, if you go to the Carousel Bar at the Hotel Monteleone and order the Vieux Carre, you will not be disappointed. It may not be perfect, but they do make a Sazerac better than most places around town.
The drink was invented at the Hotel Monteleone by Walter Bergeron in 1930’s so they do maintain a level of responsibility when making the cocktail.
3/4 ounce rye whiskey
3/4 ounce cognac
3/4 ounce sweet vermouth
1/2 teaspoon Benedictine
1 dash Peychaud’s Bitters
1 dash Angostura Bitters
Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass and fill with ice; stir well for 20 seconds and strain into an ice-filled Old Fashioned glass. Garnish with a cherry.
Usually I’d use a good vermouth, like Vya or Punt e Mes, but for this I decided to stick with Martini. Why? Because taste has this powerful ability to flash you back to where you were when you had this drink. So, if I try to modify the drink too much, it won’t have that cool effect.
Now, this drink has been covered a lot, so you can check out additional information at the following links. But make sure you head on over to Mixology Monday Central to see what others were enjoying in the Big Easy.
Cocktail Spirit with Robert Hess (Vieux Carre)
Chuck Taggart – Gumbo Pages Vieux Carre
Paul Clarke – Cocktail Chronicles – Longevity
Serious Eats – Paul Clarke Vieux Carre
Jeffrey Morgenthaler Vieux Carre
Plus many, many more.