Before I begin, I’d like to just take a moment to say I am back from Israel and New York, and am writing this from my new apartment. I should be unpacked in the fairly near (read: within a week), but the kitchen and spirits are already unpacked. I also got an interesting rum in Israel at Duty Free. It may not be too good, but we’ll see. But I digress.
My thought is this: Chefs can look in their pantry and take out any ingredient they like. Barkeeps, however, are restricted to a relatively meager stock of ingredients. The fact that we can do as much with our ingredients as we do is staggering. Our ingredients are also incredibly complex compared to, say, a piece of chicken, or even something like an onion or garlic. With the exception of vodka, even simple spirits, beers, wines, and cordials have immense complexity.
What if we could strip away some of that complexity, and, at the same time, open up what we can do with mixology? What I propose is increasing the use of tinctures. In effect, we would take an approach similar to that of exotic (tiki) drinks: Combine say, vanilla rum tincture with orange rum tincture, mango rum tincture, and toffee rum tincture, and you have the perfect rum for whatever application.
I don’t know. Especially as I put it out in this kind of detail, I feel really ambivalent about this idea. Perhaps you could use a little bit of one or two tinctures to bring out an element in one specific spirit? I don’t know. Let me know what you think!