Vieux Carré

Vieux Carré is a classic cocktail that originated from New Orleans. It is made with rye whiskey, cognac, sweet vermouth, Benedictine, and bitters.

Vieux Carré recipe

  • 30 ml rye whiskey
  • 30 ml cognac
  • 30 ml sweet vermouth
  • 1 bar spoon Bénédictine
  • 2 dashes Peychaud’s bitters

Pour all ingredients into mixing glass with ice cubes. Stir well. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Directions for how to make the Vieux Carré

  1. Pour 30ml rye whiskey into a mixing glass with ice cubes.
  2. Add 30ml cognac to the mixing glass.
  3. Pour 30ml sweet vermouth into the mixing glass.
  4. Add 1 bar spoon of Bénédictine to the mixing glass.
  5. Add 2 dashes of Peychaud’s bitters to the mixing glass.
  6. Stir all ingredients well in the mixing glass.
  7. Strain the mixture into a chilled cocktail glass.
  8. Optional: consider garnishing with a lemon twist for added flavor and presentation.

Tips for how to make the perfect Vieux Carré

  • Use high-quality ingredients: Be sure to use high-quality whiskey, cognac, and sweet vermouth in your Vieux Carré. Using top-shelf ingredients will elevate the flavor of the drink.

  • Balance the flavors: The Vieux Carré should have a slightly sweet, slightly bitter, and slightly spicy taste. Be sure to measure the ingredients precisely to achieve the perfect balance of flavors.

  • Stir, don’t shake: Unlike many other cocktails, the Vieux Carré is traditionally stirred rather than shaken. Stirring helps to create a silky texture while preserving the delicate flavors of the ingredients.

  • Use a large ice cube: Using a large ice cube will help to slowly dilute the drink without watering it down too quickly. This will preserve the flavors and aromas of the cocktail for a longer period of time.

  • Garnish carefully: The Vieux Carré traditionally calls for a lemon twist as a garnish. Be sure to carefully peel the lemon to avoid any bitter pith, and twist the peel over the drink to express its essential oils.

Alcohol-free alternative to the Vieux Carré

A great alcohol-free alternative to Vieux Carré is a mocktail version of the classic recipe. To make this delicious and refreshing drink, you will need:


  • 1 oz. grape juice
  • 1 oz. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 oz. cranberry juice
  • 1 oz. orange juice
  • A dash of grenadine
  • A dash of bitters
  • An orange twist for garnish


  1. In a cocktail shaker, add ice, grape juice, apple cider vinegar, cranberry juice, orange juice, grenadine, and bitters.

  2. Shake the ingredients thoroughly for about 30 seconds.

  3. Strain the mocktail into a chilled glass.

  4. Garnish your drink with an orange twist.

  5. Enjoy!

Vieux Carré fun facts

  1. Vieux Carré is a classic cocktail named after the iconic historic district of New Orleans, also called the “French Quarter.”
  2. This cocktail was invented in the 1930s by Walter Bergeron, the head bartender at the Monteleone Hotel’s Carousel Bar.
  3. Vieux Carré is made with equal parts rye whiskey, cognac, and sweet vermouth, along with dashes of Benedictine, Peychaud’s bitters, and Angostura bitters.
  4. The name Vieux Carré means “old square” in French, referring to the original city limits of New Orleans established in 1718.
  5. This cocktail is often served in a snifter or an old-fashioned glass and garnished with a lemon twist. It’s a popular choice among whiskey lovers and cocktail aficionados.