Courtesy Sparq

I’ve been getting my ass kicked lately. There’s been a ton of work to do at the dayjob over the holiday which still hasn’t quite let up yet. A writing project deadline looms and rewrites or new stories demand my attention. I usually get home at night with just enough energy to slip on my house coat and set myself up with some digital entertainment when I know I should be writing. But even when I’m not writing I’ll reach for that old writerly crutch that gets us through the tough times.

I’m talking, of course, about booze.

Now, in no way do I advocate excess drinking or drug use or abuse of any kind. It should not become habitual, because habit all too quickly leads to addiction. I’m already addicted to caffeine, video games and social media; I don’t need other ones on top of that. Still, I contemplate a return to pipe smoking even as I put together a cocktail like the one I’m about to describe.

It’s a simple variation on the tried & true rum and coke. You can start with an empty glass to do it up ‘neat’, throw in some ice cubes or, if you’re like me, some whiskey stones. Seriously, I love these things. They keep the drink cool without making your glass sweat or watering down the booze. The first thing to pour over them is rum, about a shot or shot and a half’s worth. I suppose any sort of rum will do, but this drink gets its name from my preferred brand, Captain Morgan’s Private Stock. It’s smooth texture and dark taste really appeal to me.

Follow this with a shot or two’s worth of Drambuie. This unique little liqueur is a recent discovery of mine, picked up on a lark around the holidays with the intent to mix it with whiskey – in this case, Johnny Walker Red. While I’m not a fan of the red label stuff, Drambuie’s complex and slightly sweet flavor had me intrigued, and I added it to this mix pretty much just to see what’d happen.

You can fill the rest of the glass with any variation of cola you like, from the cheap dollar store stuff to something tasty yet obscure. My personal preference is to eschew high fructose corn syrup if at all possible, so I use either Coke bottled outside of the US or Pepsi Throwback. The result was very pleasing, with the mixed booze not overwhelming the drink and all the flavors complimenting each other while remaining unique. As many mixed drinks featuring Drambuie include ‘nail’ in the description, I dubbed this concoction The Captain’s Nail.

Give it a try, and tell me what you think. In moderation, of course.