Cocktail: The Seelbach

Adam Miller

April 27 2013 - 3:53 PM

Our Saturday cocktail is a celebratory one. Nearly lost to the ravages of time, the reincarnated Seelbach is an elegant bourbon-based cocktail, topped with Champagne.  Admittedly, that sounds like an odd pairing (especially once you read the insane amount of bitters added to it) but it works beautifully. It’s a compelling combination of sweet, tart and bitter. The Seelbach is perfect as an aperitif but features more muscle than similar drinks.

The Seelbach was first created in 1917 and quickly became the house cocktail at the historic Seelbach Hotel in Louisville, KY. Sometime during prohibition, the recipe was lost, presumably forever. It wasn’t until some 60-odd years later that a young bartender named Adam Seger  (now somewhat of a hero of the Chicago cocktail scene) got a job at the hotel in the early 1990s. Combing through the hotel’s archives, he rediscovered the long lost recipe and started making them again. He kept the recipe secret for as long as he could, until Gary Reagan coaxed it out of him and printed it in his 1997 book, New Classic Cocktails.

Enough history. Why not mix one up tonight? It is Saturday, after all!

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