Sometimes you find yourself in possession of a really filthy bottle of Champagne and it is always a conundrum as to whether you can face drinking it. The key, of course, is to make cocktails with it and tonight’s extremely decadent fizz-based cocktail is the Olympique.
It is very simple, just pour a shot of yellow Chartreuse into a glass and top up with four shots of some woeful Champagne that you have probably been given by someone who doesn’t know any better. The cocktail should be a beautiful golden colour thanks to the Chartreuse.
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I have very happy memories of this drink (and, if I am honest, this cocktail has also deleted some memories). When I finished my final undergraduate exams I was met outside the exam hall by a lovely girl who was to become my ‘taller lying down than standing up*’ girlfriend. She presented me with a bottle of minor Champagne but refused to join me in drinking it with my wine friends in the post exam piss-up they had arranged. As luck would have it, one of my wonderful friends had brought a bottle of yellow Chartreuse along to the event and we mixed Olympiques. A very dissolute cocktail, and quite delicious too.
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Of course, if you want to be really flash you can mix your Olympiques with the truly excellent VEP yellow Chartreuse. This is Chartreuse which has been aged for an unspecified number of years in large casks before bottling. It is smoother and more mellow than the standard stuff. A great drink but sadly quite pricy.
Green Chartreuse is a more alcoholic, fiery drink. When you feel the burn as you swallow you know it is doing you good. It is not really suitable for this cocktail, it is powerful and heady, and lacks the smoothness that the yellow version brings to Olympiques. Green has its place: for example, when you need to be invigorated to deal with lesser people it can really perk one up; a veritable command to go out and dominate inferior forms of life. Once again there is a VEP version of Green which is slightly less fiery and more refined. Great treat to have a bottle of this in one’s home, ready to charge one up should a lack-of-booze-style emergency occur.
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Before I finish with Chartreuse (I still have some of my Olympique to finish) I should recommend Elixir Vegetal de Chartreuse. This is only sold in small (100ml) bottles, and described as a pick-me-up that will leave you feeling on top of the world. As well it might, having an impressive booze-quotient of 71%abv. This actually makes it bloody hard work to drink the stuff, but you can mix some with hot water for a warming winter drink, or put a few drops on a sugar cube just to enjoy its herbal flavours. You can also spray a mouthful between your pursed lips when holding a flame close your mouth and watch the impressive ‘fire-breathing’ effect. I am yet to try a few drops of Elixir Vegetal in fizz, it might well work a handy sub-interest Champagne-improver.
*If you are confused by the description of this lovely girl being taller lying down than standing up I shall simplify it: She was extremely well titted-out.