The Vieux Carré is a staple of New Orleans and is often associated with the city’s famous French Quarter. This complex and flavorful cocktail combines rye whiskey, cognac, sweet vermouth, and two types of bitters. Whether you’re a seasoned cocktail connoisseur or just looking to try something new, the Vieux Carré is a must-try drink.
Its complex blend of flavors and rich history make it a unique and memorable cocktail that you won’t soon forget. So the next time you find yourself in New Orleans, be sure to stop by the Hotel Monteleone and order a Vieux Carré cocktail.
The Vieux Carre cocktail is a classic cocktail that originated in New Orleans in the late 1930s. The drink was created by Walter Bergeron, the head bartender at the historic Hotel Monteleone’s Carousel Bar. The Carousel Bar was and still is a popular spot for tourists and locals alike, and the Vieux Carre quickly became one of the bar’s signature drinks.
The Vieux Carre is named after the French Quarter, also known as the Vieux Carré, which is the oldest neighborhood in New Orleans. The French Quarter is a cultural hub that is known for its historic architecture, music, and food. The Vieux Carre cocktail is one of the most famous New Orleans drinks and is a must-try for anyone visiting the city.
The Vieux Carre cocktail was popularized in the 1940s by Stanley Clisby Arthur, a New Orleans writer and historian, in his book “Famous New Orleans Drinks and How to Mix ‘Em”. The book is a comprehensive guide to the city’s cocktails and includes recipes for classic drinks like the Sazerac, the Ramos Gin Fizz, and of course, the Vieux Carre.
Overall, the Vieux Carre cocktail is a timeless classic that has stood the test of time. Its complex flavors and rich history make it a must-try for anyone interested in New Orleans culture and cuisine.
How to Make It
Making a Vieux Carré cocktail is a simple process that involves combining a few key ingredients in a mixing glass and serving it in a rocks glass over ice.
- 3/4 ounce rye whiskey
- 3/4 ounce cognac
- 3/4 ounce sweet vermouth
- 2 teaspoons Bénédictine liqueur
- 4 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
- Garnish: maraschino cherry or lemon twist
- Combine the rye whiskey, cognac, sweet vermouth, Bénédictine, and bitters in a mixing glass filled with ice.
- Stir the mixture for about 30-45 seconds until it is well chilled.
- Strain the mixture into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice.
- Garnish the cocktail with a maraschino cherry or lemon twist.
- Use a high-proof rye whiskey, such as Rittenhouse, to give your cocktail a stronger kick.
- For a smoother finish, use a VSOP cognac.
- Carpano Antica is a popular Italian vermouth to use in a Vieux Carré cocktail.
- To add a tropical twist, consider adding a splash of pineapple juice to your cocktail.
- Absinthe can be used to rinse the glass before pouring in the cocktail for a more complex flavor.
- The Vieux Carré is similar to a Manhattan or a Sazerac cocktail, but with the addition of Bénédictine and Peychaud’s bitters.
The Vieux Carre is a classic cocktail that has been around for almost a century. Over the years, many variations of the Vieux Carre have been created to suit different tastes and preferences. Here are a few popular variations that you can try:
New Orleans Vieux Carre
This variation uses rye whiskey instead of bourbon, which gives it a spicier flavor. It also includes Peychaud’s bitters, which is a key ingredient in the Sazerac cocktail.
Sazerac Vieux Carre
This variation uses Sazerac Rye instead of bourbon and includes absinthe, which is a key ingredient in the Sazerac cocktail. It also includes Peychaud’s bitters and Angostura bitters, which give it a complex flavor profile.
Old-Fashioned Vieux Carre
This variation combines the flavors of the Old-Fashioned and the Vieux Carre. It uses bourbon, Peychaud’s bitters, and Angostura bitters, along with muddled sugar and orange peel.
Manhattan Vieux Carre
This variation combines the flavors of the Manhattan and the Vieux Carre. It uses rye whiskey, sweet vermouth, and Benedictine, along with Peychaud’s bitters and Angostura bitters.
Hurricane Vieux Carre
This variation combines the flavors of the Hurricane cocktail and the Vieux Carre. It uses dark rum, passion fruit syrup, and lemon juice, along with bourbon, Benedictine, Peychaud’s bitters, and Angostura bitters.
These variations are just a few examples of how the Vieux Carre can be adapted to suit different tastes and preferences. Whether you prefer a spicier or sweeter cocktail, there is a variation of the Vieux Carre that is sure to please your palate.
What is the history of the Vieux Carré cocktail?
The Vieux Carré cocktail was created in the 1930s by Walter Bergeron, the head bartender at the Hotel Monteleone’s Carousel Bar in New Orleans. The drink was named after the French Quarter, which is also known as the Vieux Carré. The Vieux Carré cocktail was initially served to guests at the Carousel Bar, and it quickly became a popular drink in New Orleans.
What is the IBA recipe for a Vieux Carré?
The International Bartenders Association (IBA) recipe for a Vieux Carré cocktail is as follows:
-3 cl rye whiskey
-3 cl cognac
-3 cl sweet vermouth
-1 bar spoon Bénédictine
-2 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
-2 dashes Angostura Bitters
Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.
What is the garnish for a Vieux Carré cocktail?
The garnish for a Vieux Carré cocktail is a lemon twist. Simply twist a piece of lemon peel over the drink to release the oils and then drop it into the glass.
What is the meaning of Vieux Carré in New Orleans?
Vieux Carré is French for “Old Square.” It is the name given to the French Quarter of New Orleans, which is the oldest neighborhood in the city.
How would you describe the taste of a Vieux Carré cocktail?
The taste of a Vieux Carré cocktail is complex and sophisticated. The rye whiskey and cognac give the drink a spicy and fruity flavor, while the sweet vermouth and Bénédictine provide a sweet and herbal undertone. The bitters balance out the sweetness and add a slightly bitter note to the drink. Overall, the Vieux Carré cocktail is a well-balanced and flavorful cocktail that is perfect for sipping.