New Orleans and America's First Cocktail (With Recipe)

Posted on March 15, 2017 by Miriam Zelinsky

I just got back from an incredible trip to New Orleans. Believe it or not, it was my first time. I can't believe it took me this long to make it to the land of cocktails, Bloody Mary's and oysters – not to mention, jambalaya, crawfish and gumbo!! That list could go on and on. There's even a bar IN a carousel (!!!) that rotates slowly as the bartenders in the middle serve you drinks (!!!) and drive through daiquiri bars that serve you anything you want on the road just like a McDonalds or Wendy's – but booze! But lesson learned: beware of the strawberry daiquiris. They look pretty but are deadly! Needless to say, the trip was absolutely amazing.

We started the trip with a wedding in Houma and after, ended up taking New Orleans by storm – first stopping to do an amazing swamp tour. We had a limited amount of time on our trip so we definitely made sure we got to see as much of the historic bars/restaurants and sites as possible.

Another fun fact I learned while I was down south is that the Sazerac is believed to be the first cocktail invented in America. It's also the official cocktail of New Orleans. I obviously had to try it, right? We went to the Sazerac Bar at the landmark Roosevelt Hotel. I concluded after a sip that it was most definitely not my cup of tea, but I was glad I tried it. Also, the bar was gorgeous – dark, rich woods. I opted for an extra spicy Bloody Mary instead garnished with pickled okra. Delish!

Below is a recipe for the Sazerac. Below that is our thrilling encounter with one of the gators we saw on our swamp tour and our tour guide who proved he wasn't scared of anything! 




What You'll Need: 

2.5 ounces of Rye Whiskey (or Cognac) – Sazerac Rye if you can find it works best!

1 Sugar cube


Lemon peel 

2 Dashes Peychaud's Bitters

1 Dash of Angostura Bitters

Chilled old fashioned glass


What To Do

1) In an old fashioned glass, take the sugar cube with a few drops of water and muddle it. Note: don't use a cocktail shaker for this recipe!

2) Combine the whiskey (or cognac) with the two types of bitters and stir well.

3) Take your chilled old fashioned glass and coat it with absinthe making sure there is no excess liquid.

4) Pour the whiskey and bitters into the chilled glass and garnish with a lemon peel.

Cheers, guys!





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