The classic Last Word is a polarizing cocktail, beloved by many drinkers for its balance of sweet, sour and herbaceous flavors. It’s derided by others for exactly the same reason; those drinkers call its disparate notes too strong or “spiky.”
Some bartenders get around the latter argument by playing with the proportions; the cocktail’s gin, green Chartreuse, maraschino liqueur and lime juice are normally added in equal parts, but a little more gin and lime and a little less of the other two ingredients make for a softer drink. Jake Larragoite, the food and beverage manager at The Apothecary Lounge in Albuquerque, takes a different approach entirely: He swaps out the green Chartreuse, instead using green creme de menthe.
“Equal parts gin, maraschino liqueur, creme de menthe and lime juice gives you a fresh, vibrant cocktail with just enough sweet and sour to please the palate,” Larragoite says of his take on the drink. “If you learn what makes creme de menthe unique and begin to appreciate it for what it is, you can start to use it with purpose”
- 3/4 ounce gin
- 3/4 ounce green creme de menthe
- 3/4 ounce maraschino liqueur
- 3/4 ounce lime juice
- Garnish: lime wheel
- Garnish: mint sprig
Add all ingredients into a shaker with ice and shake until well-chilled.
Strain into a chilled coupe glass.
Garnish with a lime wheel and a mint sprig.