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The Alaska Cocktail

We bit the bullet and picked up that needed bottle of yellow Chartreuse this afternoon. Might as well continue our weekly $80 Total Wine spend I guess.

Like the green version, the yellow Chartreuse is mint forward. While the green tastes a bit like toothpaste, the yellow has a slight fish quality about it. If I had to guess I’d say this recipe uses Calamus Root. The recipes for both are a closely guarded secret of the French Monks who have been producing the aperitif for centuries so I likely will never know but, Calamus has a distinct fish taste so that is where I’d put my money.

Between the two, I like the yellow despite the fish. It isn’t as medicinal tasting as the green.

Having the Chartreuse let us keep the Mr. Boston experiments in order and I excitedly mixed up the Alaska Cocktail as soon as we got home this afternoon. In true form to the other cocktail recipes thus far, the Alaska is only an ounce and a half total. The recipe is also available in the newer 64th edition I have but they upped the size to 2-1/2 ounces and suggest it be served in a martini glass rather than a 3 oz cordial.

The Alaska Cocktail brings three fairly herbal liquor bases together. A combination that Ryan didn’t care for but I found enjoyable. While on their own, Gin and Chartreuse are fairly light; the 2 dashes of bitters creates a heavy cocktail that has a whiskey quality about it. While I wasn’t sure where in the heck they came up with the name Alaska Cocktail, after drinking this one I got it. This is a winter drink to be sure. The strong Christmas notes of the bitters warms the cool Spearmint from the Chartreuse and piney Juniper of the Gin. The drink is best cold and looses some of its cohesion as it warms in the glass.

The Alaska is definitely a unique drink and probably not for everyone but if you’re looking for something different to enjoy during the winter, you should try it out sometime.

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