Sunday, May 27, 2018

royal street royale

1 cube Demerara Sugar
3 dash Peychaud's Bitters
1 rinse Herbsaint
4-5 oz Champagne or Dry Sparkling Wine (Willm Blanc de Blancs)
1 Lemon Twist

Soak the demerara sugar cube in 3 dash Peychaud's Bitters. Rinse a flute glass with Herbsaint, add the bitters-soaked sugar cube, and top with the Champagne (leaving 3/4 inch or so of head space on top for the Herbsaint-coated walls to provide aroma). Garnish with a lemon twist. A large coupe, a double old fashioned, or small wine glass might work well here too. Filling the glass all the way up would stymie the Herbsaint rinse's aroma though.

Two Mondays ago, I had been thinking about the 1850s Champagne Cocktail and how I have never written it up on the blog. I have written up variations such as the Alfonso and Casino Imperial, and I intended to do the classic. However, my mind drifted to how to change things up. For bitters, I considered Peychaud's instead of the Angostura generally associated with the classic, and this got me thinking about taking things in a New Orleans direction with Herbsaint. So what would a Champagne Cocktail crossed with a Sazerac be like as a Champagne Sazerac (instead of a Rye Sazerac floated with Champagne such as the Sea Captain's Sazerac)?
Playing off of the term Royale used to describe Champagne drinks, I paired it with one of the main streets in New Orleans' French Quarter, namely Royal Street, to make this the Royal Street Royale. Once mixed, the libation offered lemon and anise notes to the nose. Next, a crisp, carbonated sip transitioned to a dry and fruity swallow with an anise-driven finish.

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