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Writing has truly become more than an outlet for me over the years. When I started in 2008, focusing on the automotive, I never thought I would be where I am today with so many unique and creative experiences under my belt. This journey, from the good to the rough, has been incredible and I cannot wait to see what tomorrow brings.

Part of that creative success has been supported through our work with TapInfluence, a company here in Colorado that has not only helped expand our presence, but introduced us to some incredible brands to work alongside, creating unique stories and diving into ever-challenging opportunities. I say that with the utmost confidence as every time a company reaches out, it’s a new journey, doing something I have never done, introducing me to a new idea, or, in the case I am about to share, changing the direction of my passions.

I’ve always been one for a solid cocktail, and while never really trained in the art of bartending and mixology, have appreciated and respected those that have taken the time to master the art. While some have said it is a bit of a fad movement, it is one I do hope sticks around for a long time. The right mixologist can experiment with flavors and different spirits, finding that perfect spot of enhancement to make the whole drink shine. Then came my opportunity to shine…twice.

Everclear introduced the challenge to take their grain spirit and create a new cocktail with Everclear as the base for the homemade liqueur. I had never really delved into this side of the cocktail, but jumped in with more enthusiasm than ever before. My first creation was a modification of an old coffee liqueur recipe, paired with a mango ice cream for a delicious adult dessert. And this batch of coffee liqueur, which I call Morning Mud, was so delicious I made another two to bottle and share with friends.

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Then there was my second time to shine, a complete surprise for me, to work with Everclear once again. Since the coffee liqueur recipe, I had been dreaming of flavors and pairings to add to my knowledge, and with the second recipe request, had the chance to really push my personal envelope. Wanting to create the whole cocktail from scratch, I decided I wanted to try tea infusions for an awesome summer drink. I knew it would be strong, but didn’t want it overpowering. So after a few too many bitter tea infusions, I found Earl Grey tea infused in Everclear for 8 hours to be the perfect base. Not only did it have the herbal notes I was looking for, but opened up the spectrum of ingredients to go with it. Long story short, the Earl Fritz was created, a cocktail that was more iced tea with incredible qualities, and has since become one of my favorite drinks to enjoy and serve for friends.

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So how was this such a big change for me? Well, it has inspired me to not stop creating, to look beyond the standard label that a product might have and see what other qualities it could deliver. In this case, I have started experimenting more and have even been asked by a few venues and event planners to help develop custom cocktail creations for them to serve. A sense of pride comes from that, from knowing that the recipe I created is being enjoyed over and over. And honestly, I do not think I would have crossed that threshold without the opportunity through TapInfluence and from Everclear. It truly pushed me, and I could not be happier.

Brands are searching for voices like yours. A TapInfluence profile is a great way to attract attention from top brands who are eager to work with influencers on sponsored content. To get started, create your free profile here

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of TapInfluence, the leader in connecting influencers with opportunties to collaborate with brands.

Richard Melick
About the Author

Co-founder and Editor of FactoryTwoFour.com. I am a writer and photographer with global travel ambitions. I never shy from a new recipe, adventure, or experience. I write about what I love.

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