The Bourbon boom

The Bourbon boom

We have had gin. We are, if the rumours are to be believed, about to have tequila. But right now, the big, bold word on the cocktail circuit is bourbon. This corn, rye and barley drink has said cheers to the stuffy men-only clubs and partied right into the hippest bars in the city. We are loving the new Sazerac Bourbon range that just hit our shores. And while traditionalists will tell you to drink neat or on ice, we are saying hell no … it’s the festive season … let’s do cocktails!

The Sazerac

Dating back to the 1800s, when rye whiskey was served with bitters in saloons veiled as coffee houses, this Sazerac Rye Whiskey cocktail involves a bit of faffing, but it’s worth it. You will need: 1 sugar cube, 35ml Sazerac Rye Whiskey, 7ml absinthe or Pernod, 3 dashes Angostura Bitters and lemon peel. Pack an Old Fashioned glass with ice. Into a second Old Fashioned glass, crush the sugar cube with the bitters, then add the whiskey. Now empty the ice from the first glass and coat the glass with the absinthe or Pernod, then discard. Pour the whiskey mixture into the glass and garnish with lemon peel.

Buffalo Trace Boulevardier

The Sazerac collection’s flagship is Buffalo Trace, an American bourbon aged over years in new oak barrels. It smells of vanilla, mint and molasses and is sweet … all brown sugar and spice and toffee, dark fruit and anise. Here’s Sazerac’s take on the ever-popular Negroni! You will need: 1.5 parts Buffalo Trace, 1 part Campari and 1 part sweet red vermouth. Stir all ingredients with ice, strain into an ice-filled Old Fashioned glass and garnish with orange peel.

Eagle Rare New York Sours

A rich, smooth Kentucky Straight bourbon whiskey and a classic cocktail. You simply cannot go wrong. You will need 60ml Eagle Rare, 30ml fresh lemon juice, 30ml simple syrup, 15ml fruity red wine (such as Shiraz), an egg white (optional). Combine the Eagle Rare with lemon juice and syrup in a cocktail shaker. If using egg white, add it to the shaker now. Fill with ice, cover, and shake until outside of shaker is frosty … this will take about 30 seconds. Strain into an ice-filled Old Fashioned glass. Gently pour the wine over the back of a spoon held just above the drink’s surface so wine floats on top. Garnish with a peel of lemon.

Blanton’s Smash

Named after Albert Bacon Blanton, who in the early 1920s had the largest distillery of its day, this is sweet and citrussy with hints of caramel, orange and chocolate. You will need: 25ml simple syrup, 8 fresh mint leaves (plus 1 sprig for garnish), 3 lemon wedges and 60ml Blanton’s Single Barrel. Muddle the syrup, mint and lemon in a cocktail shaker until the lemons are broken down. Add the Blanton’s and fill the shaker with ice. Using a long cocktail spoon, stir vigorously until very cold. Fill an Old Fashioned or high ball glass with ice, and use a fine strainer to strain the drink into the glass. Put the mint sprig in the palm of one hand and gently smack it with the fingers of your other hand (this releases the oils and fragrance). Use to garnish, along with a lemon slice. You can have fun with this, using other fruits and herbs … try limes and basil, or blood oranges or blueberries with mint.


Eagle Rare R579 • Sazerac Rye R549 • Blanton’s Single Barrel R549 • Buffalo Trace R300. Find our post on Facebook (Get It Pretoria Magazine) and you just may find a giveaway!



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