Sneak Peek of the Sazerac House


Earlier today, Sazerac Company offered members of the press a preview of the Sazerac House museum.  The Sazerac House is destined to be an important visitor attraction and museum in this giant cocktail city of New Orleans.  The history of the sazerac cocktail will play a large part at the museum, but expect to see other New Orleans cocktails featured. The role of New Orleans in the history of bourbon will also be a key part.

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, Sazerac Chairman Bill Goldring and Sazerac CEO Mark Brown were in attendance.

Right to left: Jeffrey Goldring, Bill Goldring, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, and Mark Brown break the ground, so to speak

Right to left: Jeffrey Goldring, Bill Goldring, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, and Mark Brown break the ground, so to speak

“We’ve long believed that New Orleans really is the birthplace of the cocktail,” said Brown.  “There would be those that would dispute it.  Fair enough, but I think we have a pretty good claim.  This is going to augment all of the hard work that Ann Tuennerman has been doing with Tales of the Cocktail, which by any standards has been remarkable.”

After a few words from everyone, Brown mentioned the company is burying a time capsule.  Inside is a bottle of Sazerac Rye, Peychaud’s bitters, a rocks glass, and a recipe for the cocktail.

A time capsule will be buried in the museum.

Sazerac Company is based here in New Orleans, though most of the action takes place at their award-winning Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort, KY.  The company’s roots can be traced to the Sazerac Coffee House in the French Quarter back in the 1800s.  It is said that is where the sazerac cocktail was invented by Antoine Peychaud.  The Sazerac Company itself formed in 1850.

The location at the intersection of Canal Street and Magazine Street is near where the original Sazerac Coffee House stood, and in a prime tourist location. Sazerac projects 100,000 visitors during its first year. The Sazerac House will create 45 new jobs and is expected to open late 2018.

Brown also said, “New Orleans’ claim to fame with cocktails is definitely going to be cemented with this opportunity.”

And before you whiskey fans ask, I’m told there will be commemerative bottlings available at the museum.


Lagniappe – Cocktail & Sons King Cake Syrup Review

Photo courtesy of Cocktail & Sons.

Photo courtesy of Cocktail & Sons.

Every Mardi Gras season in New Orleans, store shelves get inundated with king cakes and king cake-flavored stuff.  There’s king cake vodka and king cake soda to name a couple.  Most of that stuff is overly sweet or tastes like cinnamon candy.  New Orleans-based Cocktail & Sons sought to release a king cake flavored item that’s actually good.  Flavoring for this syrup includes cinnamon, pecan extract and lemon.

That product is their limited edition King Cake cocktail syrup.  It’s limited in that the stuff’s for sale until Mardi Gras, or February 9th for those of you not lucky enough to call NOLA home.

Opening the sample bottle I was sent and taking a whiff, I have to admit – the stuff really does smell like a king cake.  It’s not just cinnamon I smell.  The other ingredients really add a complexity not always found in a flavored syrup.  I’d love to pour this over a stack of pancakes.

I tried their recommended Carnival Punch cocktail with Woodford Reserve (recipe below), and it may become a staple in the household for Mardi Gras season.  And yes, every bottle is packaged with a plastic baby.  Nice.

Bottles are available for purchase through the Cocktail & Sons online store.

Carnival Punch

By Max Messier


1.5 oz. Rum, vodka or bourbon

.75 oz. Cocktail & Sons King Cake Syrup

.75 oz. Lemon juice

Glass: Rocks

Garnish: Lemon wheel

DIRECTIONS: Add all the ingredients to a shaker and fill with ice. Shake, and strain into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish with a lemon wheel.

2015 Tales of the Cocktail: Beam Suntory Jul(e)p Hour

Suntory whisky lineup

The entire Beam Suntory world whisky portfolio was on display at a special event deemed “Jul(e)p Hour”.  As I walked into an old house on Royal Street in the French Quarter, I was met with the familiar sounds of New Orleans coming from a piano player in the corner.  In this room, Beam Suntory’s Master Mixologist was mixing up a world whisky julep, featuring Auchentoshan Single Malt Scotch, Alberta Dark Rye Canadian Whisky, Jim Beam Bonded Bourbon, & Hibiki Harmony Japanese Blended Whisky.  You know what, it was pretty tasty.  This frankenstein concoction evolved nicely as the ice melted, bringing a level of complexity I don’t get in the standard bourbon mint julep.