Jimmy Buffet is the “Patron Saint” of the Beach Bar.

Bruce Springsteen is the “Patron Saint” of Brain Brew Custom Whiskey. 

In a recent interview in of all places, AARP Magazine, Bruce spoke about where he gets his inspiration:

“You have your antenna out,” he says. “You’re just walking through the world and you’re picking up these signals of emotions and spirit and history and events, today’s events and past remembrances. These things you divine from the air are all intangible elements: spirit, emotion, history. These are the tools of the songwriter’s trade before he even picks up the pen. My antenna is picking up so much information, I need to find a way to disperse it. So, I needed to learn a language that does that. And the languages of art, film, records, whatever you want to call it—all those languages do that. And you get to pass it on to your listeners or fans. That’s how it begins.” 

Our research on creativity finds that Bruce has it right. We call it stimulus mining.   

Basically, creativity comes from filing your brain with sights, sounds, emotions and experiences. Then, your brain assembles and reassembles the stimulus resulting in a new thought, idea or insight. 

Our challenge in today’s chaotic world is taking the time to stop and savor the wonder around us. We need to enjoy this unique moment in time for what it is. 

This morning on my jog abound the Beach Bar Lake, I stopped and saw a beautiful morning sight of the moon setting as the sun rose behind me.  

I’ve found that capturing the wonder requires a curious mind. It means taking the time to really listen to others – to understand what they are saying and why. It means looking under the rock or log not just at the surface view.    

It means giving voice to “what if…” and then taking action on the “what if…”

My Cocktail this week  is This World’s Greatest Sazerac

I’m often asked what my favorite cocktail is? My answer depends on my mood at the time. It also depends on the time of year. In the summer, I love Mint Juleps and the Whiskey Smash. Come fall, I love a Sazarac – one of earliest cocktails ever. 

My recipe came from a WHAT IF ….

In this case I took two cocktail legends Sazerac recipes and put them together. 

The base recipe came from Dale Degroff who I’ve written of before. It involves a mixture of Cognac and Rye. The twist on it comes from the book Speakeasy – from one of the world’s top cocktail bars – Employees Only in NYC.  PLEASE if in NYC, make the journey it is well worth it. They’ve created an amazing absinth bitters that is sprayed on the sides of the glass before making the cocktail.  

To make the absinth bitters, combine the following ingredients:

  • 3 Cups of Pernod Absinth
  • 1/2 cup Green Chartreuse
  • 1 teaspoon Peychaud’s bitters
  • 1 teaspoon Angostura bitters
  • 2 tablespoons Fee Brothers mint bitters. 

Once combined, fill a spray bottle with the bitters and place in the refrigerator. 

This World’s Greatest Sazerac Recipe

First, spray two to three sprays of the Absinthe Bitters on the inside of a rocks glass.

Next, add the following ingredients into the glass:

  • 1 large ice cube (if you have it – other wise a collection of cubes) 
  • 1 ounce of high quality Cognac (Dale suggests Pierre Ferrand Ambre Cognac which is awesome but hard to find. I’ve also found Remy Martin – 1738 Champagne Cognac works really well)
  • 1 ounce of our Deckhand Rye 
  • 1 teaspoon of Simple Syrup
  • 3 Drops of our 1862 Bitters (or Peychaud Bitters)

Once combined, stir 20 times if you used smaller ice cubes or 40 times if you used a big ice cube.

Enjoy this World’s Greatest Sazerac!!