Valentine's Day Cocktail: The "Perfect Gentleman"

Photo courtesy of Nikole Flores/Laphroaig
The "Perfect Gentleman" Cocktail

Ask anyone on the street to define "gentleman" and I guarantee you'll receive a number of different responses. Most dictionaries, such as Merriam-Webster, offer multiple options:

gentleman (n.) a. a man of noble or gentle birth b. a man belonging to the landed gentry c. (1): a man who combines gentle birth or rank with chivalrous qualities (2): a man whose conduct conforms to a high standard of propriety or correct behavior d (1): a man of independent means who does not engage in any occupation or profession for gain (2): a man who does not engage in a menial occupation or in manual labor for gain

In the 19th century, d1 and d2 were the most accepted meanings for a gentleman, whose salient distinction from, er, a non-gentle man was his ability to engage in full-time leisure due to his "independent means" (re: family money).

Today, what marks you as a gentleman is far more nebulous; if I had to offer my own description completely off the top of my head, I'd say: "a considerate non-asshole type who approaches everyone with courtesy whether they deserve it or not."

But my definition, like most, is inadequate. Words are an insufficient means of encapsulating the essence of a "gentleman"; Laphroaig appreciates this fact, and thus offers its own definition in the form of a cocktail.

This article continues on the next page.

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