At the distillery tasting room, I occasionally receive unsolicited cocktail suggestions. These I greet with sentiment ranging from gentle pity to outraged disgust. The customers' ideas are typically like a Pottery Barn catalog, something that comes to me undesired but with a frequency that makes me feel I must have through behavior or mere existence somehow requested it. Sure, I will flip through the Pottery Barn catalog if my bowels are suddenly stricken or I need to pass three minutes until Jeopardy starts, but my expectations for revelation are low. Similarly, I will listen to your terrible idea if there is still a possibility I can wring some money out of you. Some, like "my awesome Sazerac recipe" (Pottery Barn Equivalent - a cut-glass monogrammed decanter) don't harm me too much. Others, like the man who upon tasting a Pear Eau-De-Vie suggested that although he didn't enjoy it or brandy in general, thought it would work great in a cocktail he makes composed of Orange Juice, Galliano, Creme de Cacao, Creme de Menthe, and Heavy Cream. I'm not sure how the Pear Brandy was going to work into it, my attention had faded from him, and sped towards the nightmare scenarios in which such a drink might be inflicted upon me. His Pottery Barn drink equivalent is a $40 decorative throw pillow which says "Jingle".
I bring this up because I'm quite aware that someone reading the various entries on this blog might think that I need help with cocktails, desperate, bold lettered HELP. They are wrong. I am perfectly capable of creating delicious cocktails, I simply chose not to for reasons that are difficult to elucidate. However, unlike claims such as "I could've totally played in the NFL, man, I just didn't want to" I am able to back this one.
The Last Word. It works both as an up drink, as well as a Fizz depending on what time of day your liver thinks it is. In the above picture, I elegantly removed my breakfast from the background and replaced it with a vivid representation of Inspiration Striking. Elicser Combier (possibly Elixir...) shares some character with Chartreuse, not as floral (or delicious) with stronger warm, Christmas baking spice notes. Wishniak is a Croatian cherry liqueur along the lines of Cherry Heering, but a bit stronger and less cough syrup like and about half the price. I tried several gins here, and Letherbee Gin from Chicago was the best fit with the Elicser Combier (available at Binny's).