That is pretty much how I thought up this drink on Saturday at brunch. Keep the rye and sweet vermouth of a Manhattan, but change the bitters from Angostura that I generally use for Peychaud's. Besides the Peychaud's, the conversion to a more Sazerac drink requires an absinthe rinse of the glass and a lemon oil garnish. Instead of a sugar cube or simple syrup, sweet vermouth would act as the sugar source. I guess that I did a similar thing converting the Sea Captain's Special from Stan Jones' Complete Barguide into the Sea Captain's Sazerac in a slightly abstracted way.
Merchants Exchange ManhattanFor a name, I selected "Merchants Exchange" to tack on to "Manhattan." The original idea came from a Wikipedia entry about the Sazerac that led me to search again and find a great article written by David Wondrich in Esquire. The Merchants Exchange Coffee House was a bar under the ownership of Sewell Taylor until 1850 when he gave it up for the liquor import business. One of his import products was the Sazerac-de-Forge et Fils Cognac that went into the early Sazerac Cocktail recipe. The bar was transferred to Aaron Bird who changed the name of the bar to the Sazerac House; there, they sold the Sazerac Cocktail with Taylor's Cognac and local bitters from a nearby druggist, Antoine Amedie Peychaud. So technically, my Manhattan variation should be a Cognac one here, but I assume that I can let the Phylloxera part of history be relevant here too.
• 2 oz Rye Whiskey (Old Overholt)
• 1 oz Sweet Vermouth (Dolin)
• 3 dash Peychaud's Bitters
Stir with ice and strain into a rocks glass pre-rinsed with absinthe (Butterfly). Garnish with lemon oil.
I guess I picked a great theme for myself since I was motivated to do double time via a modern recipe as well as create one. And from the early entries for Mixology Monday and the enthusiastic Twitter activity, I am guessing that I am in good company with this one. So thank you all for building up energy on this theme and building up the cocktail blogger community as a whole. Normally, I cannot wait for the wrap-up post; however, that feat is on my shoulders. Cheers!