One Company’s Search for Their Own Branded Cocktail
The new challenge for the drink creation process was now finding the proper color of the cocktail before the making the drink. Food coloring was an option, but that felt like the option for quitters. We needed to acquire the color through the natural combination of liquors and mixers during the construction of an orange flavored drink. I went to work that night and dug through the Cabinet of Misfit Booze: the one filled with liqueurs, schnapps, and those promotional bottles that liquor reps will give to you that a single customer would never order. That’s where I found the bright orange light in the dark, the answer to all of my orange drink-related problems: Aperol. Much more popular in Italy than here in the US, Aperol was introduced in 1919 as an aperitif. Aperol most famously used in the Spritz cocktail, but for my purposes, it had it all. The bright orange color of it could elevate our orange drink to the perfect color, and the bitter orange and rhubarb flavor could help offset any worries about a too sweet drink. At 11% alcohol, I wouldn’t have to worry about the addition of it in a cocktail knocking someone on their ass after only one of them. That night I test ran the same drink from before, except with an addition of half an ounce of Aperol to Greg and another Drift2 employee, Jon. First off, this drink’s color matched the exact color we had in mind. Vibrant bright orange, just like the logo. The taste was much less sweet than before, and those two approved of it. It felt like we were getting close to the perfect orange drink for the conference, but we weren’t sold on this version of the drink as the final product because there’s always room to experiment and create a better cocktail. Plus I still had to convince a few other people that this was the Drift2 orange drink, not just any Drift2 orange drink, so we set a date to try again, and I made a note to pick up our ingredients for a taste testing with all of the employees at Drift2.