Creole restaurant Tujague’s in New Orleans is celebrating its 160th anniversary in 2016.
Not only is Tujague’s the birthplace of brunch and home to the oldest stand-up bar in the U.S., it’s where the Grasshopper cocktail and Whiskey Punch were created.
Tujague’s opened adjacent to the city’s first public market in 1856, making it New Orleans’ second-oldest dining institution; Antoine’s, opened in 1840, is the oldest.
Local workers would come daily to enjoy a mid-day “butcher’s breakfast,” now known as the tradition of brunch.
Renown for its spicy shrimp remoulade, Tujague’s has served presidents–Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower and France’s De Gaulle–as well as such notables as Cole Porter, O. Henry, Diane Sawyer, Harrison Ford and Ty Cobb. The restaurant is on the National Culinary Heritage Register, which honors culinary traditions, inventions, products, processes and establishments at least 50 years old that have contributed to the development of American foodways.
The Grasshopper was created by Tujague’s co-owner Philip Guichet in 1918. Guichet competed in a national cocktail contest in New York that year. His creation, the frothy, minty Grasshopper cocktail, placed second. Upon his return, the Grasshopper became a Tujague’s favorite and remains popular today. Here’s Guichet’s recipe.
¾ oz. Green crème de menthe
¾ oz. Creme de cacao
¾ oz. White crème de menthe
½ oz. Brandy
¾ oz. Heavy cream
¾ oz. Whole milk
½ tsp. Brandy for topper
Combine all ingredients, except for the brandy, in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously, strain into a Champagne flute and top with brandy.
Recipe courtesy of Tujague’s Cookbook: Creole Recipes and Lore in the New Orleans Grand Tradition by Poppy Tooker, Pelican Publishing Co. 2015.