This stirred rye whiskey libation was the house cocktail at the now-defunct La Louisiane, a New Orleans institution famous for its fiery Cajun specialties. Originally printed in 1937 in Stanley Clisby Arthur’s Famous New Orleans Drinks and How to Mix ‘Em, this lost New Orleans classic was recently adapted and featured in Jim Meehan’s PDT Cocktail Book. Somewhere between a Vieux Carre and a Sazerac, the La Louisiane features absinthe, sweet and herbal Benedictine liqueur, and Peychaud’s bitters.
There are those who consider the Manhattan a little sweet for their tastes. Enter the Perfect Manhattan—a recipe variation that calls for equal parts dry and sweet vermouth for a more balanced version of the classic cocktail. Though we believe Manhattans should always be made with rye, bourbon is also an acceptable option, especially in...