The Sazerac Company, makers of Peychaud's Bitters for over 100 years, is adding a new twist to its bitters line, Peychaud's Whiskey Barrel-Aged Cocktail Bitters. Aged in Sazerac Rye Whiskey barrels for 140 days, the bitters are a flavourful marriage of the classic Peychaud's bitters with the spicy undertones of the Sazerac Rye Whiskey.
The roots of Peychaud's Bitters go back to the early 1800s when Antoine Amedie Peychaud, an apothecary, gained fame in New Orleans for the compounding of a liquid tonic called bitters. These bitters gave an added zest to the potions of cognac brandy he served to his friends and acquaintances in his pharmacy.
By the 1870s, as American Rye Whiskey became more popular and more readily available in New Orleans, Peychaud added his bitters to Rye cocktails while working at the world famous Sazerac Coffeehouse in the French Quarter.
"We thought it would be an interesting experiment to age our Peychaud's Bitters in our Sazerac Rye barrels. We weren't quite sure what to expect, but after a few months, we were surprised by how well the experiment was turning out," said Harlen Wheatley, master distiller, Buffalo Trace Distillery.
Wheatley closely watched the bitters as they aged in the barrels. Upon tasting the bitters at the 140 day mark, he decided the flavours were a perfect marriage of the barrel char, the rye spice, and the herbs and spices that make up Peychaud's Bitters.