LIFE BEHIND BARS
Everything You Know About the Sazerac Is Wrong
This episode of the award-winning podcast ‘Life Behind Bars’ looks at the complicated history of the famous rye whiskey cocktail.
The Sazerac has made a fool of me.
The legendary New Orleans drink had a lovely history about how it was originally made with Cognac, but thanks to the massive destruction wrought on European vineyards by phylloxera, Americans were forced to replace the French spirit with rye whiskey.
Sadly, despite having including this history in several articles and my book, The Art of American Whiskey, it is not true. I take comfort in the fact that I wasn’t the only one to have believed this compelling story. My colleague David Wondrich uncovered the real history of the drink, which is quite different then what was previoulsy reported. (No surprise, given that his cocktail scholarship has busted many spirited myths.)
On this episode of Life Behind Bars, Dave and I discuss the complicated history of the Sazerac and try to finally set the record straight about its origins.
Life Behind Bars features Half Full’s editor Noah Rothbaum and its Senior Drinks Columnist David Wondrich as they discuss the greatest bartenders and greatest cocktails of all time. It just won the Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Award for the world's best drinks podcast.
Edited by Alex Skjong
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