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In 1838, a Creole immigrant named Antoine Peychaud opened the doors to a pharmacy on Royal Street in the French Quarter of New Orleans. While Peychaud was an apothecary by trade, he was also a natural mixologist. He would often invite friends over to his pharmacy after it had closed and mix drinks for them, including a drink he crafted from brandy, absinthe and a proprietary blend of bitters.
Peychaud’s cocktail became wildly popular throughout New Orleans. In 1850, Sewell Taylor – owner of the Sazerac Coffee House located on Exchange Alley – institutionalized the cocktail by using only Sazerac de Forge et Fils Brandy, a brandy which Taylor imported and sold exclusively. By 1869, Thomas H. Handy had purchased the Sazerac Coffee House from Taylor and by the turn of the century, a phylloxera epidemic forced coffee houses (at the time, the term “coffee house” was used to refer to a cocktail bar) to use rye whiskey rather than brandy in the making of the Sazerac.
The Sazerac is known as the oldest American cocktail ever made. Today, you can make a genuine Sazerac cocktail with the recipe below!
- Place the sugar cube together with the bitters in an old fashioned glass and crush the sugar cube
- Add 1.5 ounces Sazerac Rye Whiskey to glass
- In a second Old Fashioned Glass, add absinthe and coat glass
- Empty absinthe from glass and add sugar, Sazerac and bitters mixture
- Garnish with lemon peel
Corsair RED Absinthe is a unique interpretation on a classic, green spirit. The absinthe’s natural, red color comes from the addition of hibiscus flowers, which provide a floral note to the absinthe that is complimented by its flavors of tangy citrus, herbal undertones and a spicy, peppery finish.
Corsair RED can be enjoyed neat or on the rocks, but also works great in a variety of different cocktails. Here are a few ideas to get you started: