Finally, we know that the common belief about elderly dogs and new tricks isn’t true. Even if you’re bound to old traditions, you can give them a modern twist.

Take the Mint Julep, and in the middle of a New Orleans summer doesn’t that sound like a refreshing idea? The point is that ingenuity and desire can even improve on a classic recipe.

Each year, the Tales of the Cocktail festival hosts a competition to create a new drink that will be highlighted at this most spirited celebration. Some years the cocktail concoction is brand-new, while other years the winning beverage is a derivation on a theme.

This year the latter is the case, and our city’s own heritage is featured. The talented mixologist Maksym Pazuniak of CURE on Freret Street, considered a well-known symbol of Southern gentility and sport, impressed upon this cocktail classic a Creole touch.

Creole Julep
Created by Maksym Pazuniak, CURE

2 1/4 ounces Cruzan Single Barrel Estate Rum
1/2 ounce Clement Creole Shrubb
1/4 ounce Captain Morgan 100
2 dashes Fee Bros. Peach bitters
2 dashes angostura bitters
8-10 mint leaves
1 Demerara sugar cube

Muddle sugar, Creole Shrubb and bitters until sugar is dissolved in a 10-ounce-tall glass. Add mint and press to express oils. Add cracked ice. Add Cruzan and Captain Morgan 100. Stir until frost appears on outside of glass. Garnish with mint sprig.

Tales of the Cocktail unfolds throughout the French Quarter, the Central Business District, and the Warehouse District, July 8-12. Full details on Tastings, Seminars, Dinners, Parties, and events are available at