There are times when it is hard to find inspiration to create new cocktails. After recently finishing two books with a total of 102 original recipes, I found myself lacking the creativity and inspiration to create something new for an upcoming newspaper article I write on a regular basis.
My cocktail mind was dry, my home bar with its’ hundred plus choices of liquors was not doing it for me.
I wondered where I could find just a touch of inspiration. Sadly, most of the bars near my house catered to thirsty bikers and fishermen looking for a cold beer. Several restaurants nearby had dismal cocktail menus stuck firmly in the neon soaked 1990’s with nary a fresh ingredient. Other local establishments stocked 41 flavors of flavored vodka and no fresh juices or ingredients.
I flipped through my antique cocktail books from the thirties and forties. Many times I’ll stumble on a vintage recipe with a flavor profile I can update to suit tastes today. But after flipping through several books, I found nothing.
I stepped away from the books, social media and my own home bar. I took a cocktail break. I sipped fresh water, picked fresh fruit from my yard, cooked new recipes I had saved for months. I focused of cooking beautiful roast meats and tasty chicken dishes. I perfected my homemade almond flour dough pizza recipe.
I drank wine. Good wine, boxed wine, fizzy wine – no pressure, no ingredients to worry about. Just pour and sip, it was so easy.
I did not make one cocktail.
I spent a lot of time in my kitchen, cleaning my fridge of syrups & infusions previously made but never used or finished. I cleaned the cocktail slate to start fresh just like the first day of school.
After taking a month long break, I now feel like I have my mojo back. Recipes and new takes on standard cocktails are brimming from my mind.
All of them embrace the Everyday Exotic ethos – easy, simple ingredients that create fresh, tasty and exotic cocktails.
My first two books Everyday Exotic Cocktails Florida Edition and Country Chic Editions can be found on both Etsy and amazon.com. Both have fantastic pictures and easy to follow recipes.
My third book, The Hele Lau Cocktail Recipe Book can only be obtained ‘speakeasy style.’ A visit to a certain bar and a certain code phrase is required to obtain this book.