once in a super blood moon, you’ll find someone that is as broken as you, probably more…someone that is going to lead you down a path of a thousand tiny cuts. and with that, i present to you our first ever guest editorial at fernet love….
What does Fernet taste like for me?
I believe that alcohol contains the context of the place in which it was first consumed. Budweiser will always force me into recalling the hot, dry summer nights of Utah. Even when Bud is über cold I am plunged into that place where I am clandestinely sipping St. Louis urine at a flaccid 97 degrees. Needless to say I grimace when someone I truly like hands me a Budweiser, takes an intense drag of their own, looks at me and says, “God, nothing like a Bud on a day like today.” They are sincere. I am not as I take a meek geisha sip and respond with a hearty, “Fuck yeah brah!”
Let’s get to Fernet. I first consumed this beautiful liquor while in the mountain town of Verbier. My friends were hurtling towards near death ecstasy from shots that reflected an 80s fashion sensibility. That edge was not appealing to me, so my friend, the most complete drunk known to humanity, suggested that I have some Fernet with a bit o’ ginger. Good GOD I love that man and his Norwegian abilities. I tasted Denmark. Yes, Denmark. I tasted Europe. I tasted Lakerol. I tasted Montana mornings. I tasted the camaraderie of your group swaying in unison against the bar. I felt my friend becoming more lucid the more that he drank. I tasted bitterness hiding in the reflection of sweet.
Okay, Fernet raw. Room temperature. No ice. No mixer. There is a distinct sharpness coming from this stuff. Not sweet. Not sweet, but then there is an aftertaste that lingers. It reminds me of… There is a warmth to Fernet.
What does Fernet smell like? God, I don’t want to say it, but it smells like fermented molasses. That smell is not the taste though. There are surprises in that taste. Initially harsh like Grandma’s or Amy’s cough syrup, but without that cloying sweetness. It lacks saccharine. This initial taste is but a door barring the pedantic from entry. Jesus, the finish is smooth. It is the best parts childhood. It is a smile thrown your way with the summer sun gleefully blinding you, haloing her face. Fernet finishes with that moment that you fell in love.