Orange is the New Black: Fig’s Sazerac Cocktail

A review of Fig’s Sazerac Cocktail from the Orange is the New Black Cookbook.

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Fig’s Sazerac Cocktail

FigS6When I told my husband I was mixing us a couple of sazerac’s tonight, you should have seen the excitement!  He had one when we visited New Orleans last year, and absolutely loved it.  This is actually the first time I’ve tried it, though, so I wasn’t sure what to expect.

According to the Orange is the New Black cookbook, the Sazerac originated in New Orleans using French brandy.  Once that brandy became too expensive, it evolved to rye whiskey and absinthe.  Then absinthe was banned, so they switched to Herbsaint instead.  It’s the drink that will not die!20190428_162219

Luckily, you can actually find absinthe nowadays in your local Bevmo, so I was able to make the 2nd iteration of this drink.  The recipe gives the option to use either absinthe or Herbsaint.

The recipe also mentioned it’s “America’s cocktail,” but I used Canadian rye whiskey so mine was tainted by Canada 😉

While the drinks are being made, the glass is packed with ice to keep cold.

In a separate glass, the bitters is splashed onto a sugar cube and then the sugar cube is crushed before mixing with rye whiskey.

Then the ice is removed from the 1st glass and a splash of absinthe is added.  The glass is swirled around to coat the bottom and sides in absinthe, and then the rest is poured out before the whiskey mixture is added in.  Don’t worry about the sugar chunks falling into your drink – they more or less stick to the bottom of the 2nd glass as you pour into the 1st.


The last step – a lemon twist for garnish!

Taste: 7/1020190428_162721

I didn’t love this, but I husband gives it 9/10.  I discovered I don’t like absinthe (or probably Herbsaint either).  It tastes like black licorice, which I am not a fan of.

The drink was also extremely strong – you’re basically doing a shot of rye whiskey that’s been spiked with absinthe (and bitters).

Difficulty: Easy

The only challenging part is crushing the sugar, but if you have proper cocktail tools it should be difficult at all!

Cost: Pricey

You will need rye whiskey, absinthe or Herbsaint, Peychaud’s bitters, a sugar cube, and a lemon.  The absinthe was the most expensive item on our list – $30 for that little bottle!

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