Late bartending legend Murray Stenson’s most famous drink

The Last Word epitomized what Stenson was all about.

A cocktail on an iron patio table with a Zig Zag beverage menu visible

The Last Word has an appealing mix of sweet and sour.

Photo via u/ianruns

Time to pour one out for a beloved local icon. This week, the Seattle bar community is mourning the loss of Murray Stenson, a trailblazer among mixologists who helped put our city on the national cocktail map. Stenson died at the age of 74 on Friday.

The legendary bartender’s most well-known concoction was a vibrant take on a Prohibition-era drink called the Last Word, which gives a taste of his influence.

There’s been a whole oral history about the cocktail. Consisting of just four ingredients — gin, chartreuse, maraschino liqueur, and lime juice — Stenson popularized the drink in the early aughts at Zig Zag Cafe. Its influence then reached all the way to the New York City bar scene.

Ask for the Last Word by name at Zig Zag or other craft-focused cocktail joints influenced by Stenson like the Doctor’s Office. Then sip + savor remembering the man behind it.

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