17 Jan Ready For Mardi Gras?

Birthplace of more than her fair share of cocktails, the Big Easy has its own namesake libation in the Vieux Carré. Literally “The Old Square,” for the French Quarter en français, this punchy little number was first mixed in 1938 by head bartender Walter Bergeron at the Carousel Bar in the Hotel Monteleone. The Carousel Bar completes a full circle every 15 minutes, and the historic bar mixed drinks for Falkner, Capote, Hemingway, and Tennessee Williams. The bar’s recent renovation brings Ziegfeld Follies girls to life on the walls with hand-beaded Swarovski crystals and pearls catching the light as the carousel turns and the drinks pour. During this Mardi Gras season laissez les bon temps rouler with a Vieux Carré. Recommend it to patrons fond of Manhattans, and capture a bit of old fashioned New Orleans cocktail class.


Born 1938 at the Carousel Bar in the Hotel Monteleone.

Born 1938 at the Carousel Bar in the Hotel Monteleone.

1 oz Rye whiskey (the Carousel Bar uses Bulliet)

1 oz Cognac (currently Hennessey)

1 oz Sweet Vermouth

1 tsp Bénédictine

2 dashes Peychaud’s bitters (created, appropriately, in town by a Haitian apothecary)

2 dashes Angostura bitters

Combine ingredients in a mixing glass and stir with ice. Strain into an old fashioned glass and garnish with a twist.

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