Mixology Monday seems to come around faster and faster every month, so much so that lately I have been a little lax in taking part every month and in doing so have missed some superb topics. Thankfully though today I find myself sitting in Hamburg airport with an hour to kill and a perfect drink for this months theme – superior twists hosted by fellow Englishman Tristan Stephenson.
Tristan asks us to consider drink variations that “for one reason or another do an even better job than the drinks upon which they are based.” I’ve already written about several superb drinks that fall in to this category such as Bastian Heuser’s Guyana Manhattan, a Manhattan that replaces rye with Demerara rum, and Gonçalo de Sousa Monteiro’s Pegu Club variation, The Juniper Club Cocktail. Of course there is even the humble Oh Gosh!, a Daiquiri variation that if not superior is at least interesting.
The drink I’ve chosen, however, is a play on the Last Word – a cocktail that already defies common sense and logic by combining powerful ingredients like Chartreuse, Maraschino and gin, yet somehow manages to turn out delcious, complex yet incredibly balanced. Attempting to adjust such a recipe might seem foolhardy, but thankfully with a skilful bartender like Phil Ward of Death & Co. in New York you know you are in safe hands.
Photo to come…
- ¾ shot / 22.5 ml / ¾ oz rye whiskey
- ¾ shot / 22.5 ml / ¾ oz Green Chartreuse
- ¾ shot / 22.5 ml / ¾ oz Maraschino
- ¾ shot / 22.5 ml / ¾ oz lemon juice
- Shake all ingredients with ice and strain in to a cocktail glass.
Swapping gin for rye, and lime juice for lemon juice, the ingredient list for the Final Ward, like its progenitor the Last Word, doesn’t look like it would turn out very well on paper. In a cocktail glass, however, is another matter. A deliciously bright drink for a rye cocktail, the Final Ward is at once fresh, complex and very herbal with the strange interplay of the Maraschino and Chartreuse from the Last Word further deepened by the spicy, aromatic notes of the rye.
A wonderful drink indeed, and while it’s hard to find fault with the original Last Word for my money the Final Ward is even tastier and definitely qualifies at a superior twist…
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