Peychaud’s bitters were invented by a creole immigrant named Antoine Peychaud in nineteenth century New Orleans. Peychaud operated a pharmacy and apothecary on the French Quarter’s Royal Street in 1838, where he would mix his secret tonic with brandy and absinthe for customers and friends. The drink he mixed became so popular that it spread all over New Orleans, most notably to the Sazerac Coffee House. Rye whiskey eventually replaced the brandy in Peychaud’s signature cocktail and the classic Sazerac was born.
Also known as Creole bitters, Peychaud’s is considered an aromatic bitter like Angostura, but the flavor is lighter, sweeter, and less earthy or root-driven than traditional aromatic bitters. Peychaud’s bitters are a bright reddish-pink in color, with the flavors of anise, citrus, and spice; and a floral, fruity bouquet. The cocktail recipe video below will teach you how to make the classic, iconic Sazerac cocktail Peychaud’s Bitters are known for, but they can also be used in any cocktail that would welcome a hint of anise and aromatics.
The Classic Sazerac Cocktail
1 sugar cube
1 1/2 oz Rye whiskey
2 Dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
1 dash angostura bitters
1 barspoon absinthe (or Pernod)
Place the sugar cube in a mixing glass or old fashioned glass with just enough water to moisten it. Use the back of a barspoon to crush the cube.
Add the rye, bitters, and ice. Stir just until chilled, about 30 seconds.
Add the absinthe to a chilled Old Fashioned glass and turn the glass to coat the sides. Pour off any excess.
Use a cocktail strainer to strain the cocktail into the absinthe coated glass.
Twist and squeeze the lemon peel over the glass to release the oils. Rub the rim of the glass with the peel and, if desired, drop it into the cocktail. Some Sazerac enthusiasts insist the drink should not be served with the peel in the cocktail, while others prefer it.