A Master of Mixological Science

I love to read about the art of making a great cocktail.  Master mixologist Derek Brown, of the Columbia Room in Washington D.C., maintains a minimalist approach to creating his cocktails. Brown acknowledges the impulse to make a 'kitchen sink' cocktail, which takes an all-in approach to a drink, but now, as a seasoned bartender, he advocates fewer, high-quality ingredients, handled correctly and served properly.  He even uses a thermometer to make sure the temperature of each cocktail he serves is 30 degrees.

To create a new cocktail, Brown will start with a single ingredient and approach the concoction from there.  Comparing the process of perfecting a cocktail to a chess problem, I would agree that his methodology does have a unique complexity to it.  He considers the ingredient and matches it with the season, vintage recipes, then makes adjustments that could take from weeks to years.

I was enthralled reading about how Brown comes up with cocktails, and I think you will be, too.  Read more about his process here.