Vieux Carré

July 11th, 2008

Today was my last day at work before heading to the States, so tonight I was definitely in the mood for a celebratory cocktail. Wanting to get myself in the mood for New Orleans next week I started out with a Sazerac, but as much as I love that drink I fancied something new to try out. After a bit of searching around I eventually settled on another New Orleans classic – the Vieux Carré.

The cocktail was invented at the Hotel Monteleone (where Tales of the Cocktail is held) in 1938 by the then-head bartender Walter Bergeron. It’s named after the French term for the French Quarter of New Orleans, le Vieux Carré, which literally means “old square”. A true New Orleans classic, it seemed like the perfect way to prepare for Tales of the Cocktail.

Vieux Carré cocktail

Vieux Carré

View in: oz | ml | shots

The Vieux Carré is a surprisingly sweet drink though by no means is it cloying, indeed it is a very balanced drink. Like in the Cognac/rye Sazerac the rye and Cognac here work beautifully together, with the vermouth taking the edge of the strong spirits and adding some interesting aromatics to the mix. Despite the small amount used the Bénédictine also brings plenty of flavour to the drink, and the overall taste is a wonderfully balanced mixture of aromatics and sweetness that deftly avoids becoming too heavy or overwhelming.

Given that it’s a drink made out of solely alcoholic ingredients the Vieux Carré is remarkably smooth and easy to drink. Highly recommended – I cannot wait to order myself one at the Carousel Bar of the Hotel Monteleone next week!

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Posted in Aromatic Bitters, Bénédictine, Cognac, Recipes, Rye

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7 responses to “Vieux Carré”

  1. Matt Matt says:

    Sounds delicious. I’ll have to mix one up at home and pretend I’m at Tales of the Cocktail too.

  2. Stevi Deter Stevi Deter says:

    This is one of my all-time favorite rye cocktails. Your post inspired me to make a few the other day to enjoy prior to going to see Eddie Izzard (our own private happy hour). Almost makes up for not going to Tales of the Cocktail…

    No, not really. But tasty!

  3. Married …with dinner » Blog Archive » DOTW: Pimm’s Cup says:

    [...] in the middle of the board, below the Hurricane, the Ramos Fizz, and the Sazerac, but above the Vieux Carre, the Obituary, and the La Louisiane. No matter the reason for its iconic status, it’s [...]

  4. MxMo XXIX: New Orleans — Absinthe Suissesse | Two At The Most says:

    [...] started with several favorite New Orleans classics, especially Sazeracs, Vieux Carr�s, and Cocktails � la Louisiane. One thing I noticed is how much I’m enjoying that little [...]

  5. Joao Eusebio Joao Eusebio says:

    Had one @ the carroussel bar @ the Monteleone hotel in new Orleans, this is a really great binding of whisky with brandy!! tastes gorgeous!!

  6. Ein Portrait. MIXOLOGY ONLINE im Gespräch mit Roman Lewandowski. says:

    [...] nach der aktuellen Lieblingsspirituose & Jahreszeit. Derzeit rühre ich unglaublich gerne „Vieux Carré“ und trinke selbigen auch mit Vorliebe, insofern er denn entsprechend zubereitet [...]

  7. Ein Portrait. MIXOLOGY ONLINE im Gespräch mit Lutz Rau. says:

    [...] ist ganz unterschiedlich nach Lust, Laune und Jahreszeit. Unter den Top Ten: Martinez, Vieux Carre oder ganz solide Maker’s Mark mit Coca [...]

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