At Octane, we bartenders use the daily dinner hour lull to Instagram pictures of drinks and their ingredients. Many of the cocktails are both beautifully colored and cleverly named. As a result, I’ve become somewhat engrossed in research on the subject.
Weekly Cocktail of the Hour posts will highlight one cocktail and its history as told by the books and online sites I frequent and love. This week, the Last Word hits the top of the list. Though the exact quantity varies, the basic recipe calls for equal parts gin, Maraschino liqueur, Green Chartreuse and lime juice.
Developed in Detroit right before the start of Prohibition, this cocktail is almost more famous for its disappearance than for its origin. Interestingly, the name’s origin remains a mystery.
After its introduction in the early 1920s, the Last Word almost entirely disappears from the historical record for 80 years. Though it resurfaced in Ted Saucier’s 1951 Bottoms Up, it remained obscure until it was rediscovered and brought back to fame in 2004 by Seattle’s Zig Zag Cafe.
Though summer is drawing to a close, the Southern heat will most likely endure until early or mid-October. The lime’s acidity, Chartreuse’s earthiness, Maraschino’s sweetness and gin’s herbaceousness all come together to create a light, sippable cocktail you’ll want to keep in your glass all day long.
3/4 oz lime juice
3/4 oz Green Chartreuse
3/4 oz Maraschino liqueur
3/4 oz gin
Shake for 10-15 seconds or until cooled through. Strain into a chilled coupe glass.