Originally invented at the Merchants Exchange Coffee House in the 1850s, the Sazerac quickly became — and remains — synonymous with New Orleans drinking. Historically made with cognac, the cocktail began making use of rye whiskey as a replacement when phylloxera plagued the vines of France and cognac supply became short. Now that the cognac supply is alive and well, Nicholas Bennett, head bartender of Danny Meyer’s buzzy new bar Porchlight in New York City, uses this spirit to make his variation of the iconic drink. We stopped in last week to check out how it’s done — scroll down for a short video and the recipe.

Speaking of Danny Meyer and drinking, Food Republic is honored to sponsor the restaurateur’s keynote discussion at this year’s Tales of the Cocktail celebration in New Orleans. The evening will include a lively talk moderated by Tales cofounder Paul Tuennerman at Harrah’s Theater on Wednesday, July 15, from 6:00 to7:30 p.m. Tickets are currently available for the event here.

Cognac Sazerac

Ingredients
3 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
1 dash Angostura bitters
1/4 ounce simple syrup
2 ounces Louis Royer cognac

Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients, top with ice and stir. Strain into glass that has been spritzed with Herbsaint, add a spritz of lemon and serve.