An impromptu trip to Austin, TX for the famous “South By” festival put me in front of the most innovative technology imaginable, but more importantly it landed me a barstool at Péché, a French restaurant which is home to good eats, a friendly staff, an over the top spirit selection and a bad ass bartender, Charlie. Yes, I got permission to use his name this time, sorry Sebastian, you’re sitting this one out.

Old Fashioned…Old Fashioned… Old Fashioned… a 3-peat (hi, Drake) of cocktails.

Let’s start with round 1…

Dash + Twist announcer: “Hailing all the way from Kentucky… with an official weigh in of 3 ounces…introducing… the Péché Buffalo Trace Old Fashioned. The most impressive part of this cocktail is how it originates. Rob, the owner of Péché road-tripped to Kentucky to sample whiskey from hundreds of different casks. After countless hours (and shots) he finally found one, it was love at first sip. All this to make sure his old fashioned is on point. The other interesting part to the PBTOF (think about it) is the fact that it was naked. No twists, no cherries, no tassels, it’s plain AF. Typically there is a lemon peel, but Charlie decided to highlight the taste of the whiskey, so he did his best fruit ninja imitation and cut the lemon out.

Tale of the tape

Sugar – Plain ol’ white sugar

Bitters – Jerry Thomas Bitter Truth & Angostura mixture

Ice – One large cube

Spirit – Buffalo Trace bourbon aged in a hand selected cask

Additives – Nothing

peche

Round 2

Similar to round 1, but we just swapped the whiskey from Buffalo Trace bourbon to the High West double rye whiskey and added a lemon twist. A double rye has a bite, but when the drink is made properly, it’s ‘twice’ as delicious.

Sugar – Plain ol’ white sugar

Bitters – Jerry Thomas Bitter Truth & Angostura mixture

Ice – Small ice cubes

Spirit – High West double rye whiskey

Additives – Lemon twist and Charlie’s magic.

Pesce - Round 2 Drink

This drink is proof that making a perfect old fashioned is a true craft. Charlie did just that and the drink was perfect. He was like a scientist in his boozy lab, from the whiskey choice down to careful dropping of bitters to ensure the right taste.

Round 3

This round was a bit cloudy…it was a pretty long day, and by this time, like Austin says…things were starting to “get weird.” The drink was made the same way as round 2, but after a brief history lesson, Charlie sold me on using Cognac, one of the OG spirits for an old fashioned. It didn’t bang as hard as the first two, but ever since P.Diddy and Busta’s smash hit, I feel pretty cool drinking Cognac. Overall great experience but now it’s time for some food trucks…