2/12/2013 07:04:00 PM

Photo of the Day: Cole's Sazerac

Mardi Gras in LA basically means a lot of restaurants serve jambalaya, beignets and crawfish pies, and everyone has a lot of Abita beer on tap. Not that there's anything wrong with that. If you can't make it to New Orleans, you might as well eat, drink and keep your tops on (or not) to get beads. And then there are places that serve Hurricanes as an ode to the Big Easy party, but we'd rather turn to the much more sophisticated Sazerac. One, it's the official cocktail of New Orleans, having been created there around 1850. Two, it's only a few ingredients and mostly whiskey. Three, it's our go-to at Cole's.

Once bartenders started going back to classic cocktails, the Sazerac popped up in a lot of bars and restaurants in LA, and we often used it as a barometer to judge the mettle of some self-described mixologists. Short story: we had a lot of bad Sazeracs. But one fantastic one, maybe even the best, is at the Downtown LA bar. Yes, the drink in theory should be simple - just rye whiskey, an absinthe wash, Peychaud bitters and a sugar cube - but people just can't seem to get it right. At Cole's they do, and it's absolutely perfect. We'll have another, thanks.

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