Rachel had mentioned having trouble finding Chartreuse since Washington State privatized their liquor distribution. Now that restaurants and bars buy from large distributors that ordinary lushes don’t have access to, it’s been difficult to find a store that will stock less popular stuff. But we’re not ones to take a shortage lying down.
When I was over at their house for dinner Sam suggested a side-by-side taste test between Chartreuse and a less fancy replacement suggested to him by the fearless staff at the now shuttered Vessel*. The color difference and herbal intensity were striking when tasting them straight. Sam made us two versions of the Perfect Seattle to try them incorporated into a cocktail. The knockoff makes a perfectly delicious drink but misses the sit up and take notice bite of true Chartreuse. A totally reasonable swap out for an ordinary night or someone looking for something less bracing. I’ll be hunting down a bottle of the real stuff for when I want something special.
The Perfect Seattle Adapted from The Leary Traveller, Ballard
1 oz whiskey
1/4 oz Chartreuse
Dash of orange bitters
Combine over ice and stir. Strain into cocktail glass and garnish with orange rind. Makes one.
*Edited after corrections from Sam. Giving Vessel proper credit!