Monday, June 07, 2004

Unlike many past presidents, Ronald Reagan wasn't much of a drinker. However, it should be noted that despite his affiliation with California, his drink of choice was a cocktail rather than wine. Ronnie liked an Orange Blossom, a drink made from gin and orange juice, fallen out of fashion except with desperately hungover people who have run out of vodka.

Apparently he took it heavy on the orange juice.

Our sympathies to Nancy and the rest of the family.

Friday, June 04, 2004

Even aside from patella tendons and other domestic responsibilities, I have been rather busy on other fronts. I am now trying to put together two course outlines -- one beginning June 24th, the other in September -- alongside the usual freelance work, a new proofreading job and trying to whip Mondo Cocktail into shape.

So, I only have time for a brief post about the upcoming Belmont Stakes and what you should drink while you watch Smarty Jones win the Triple Crown this Saturday.

The traditional Belmont Stakes drink is the White Carnation and while, not nearly as good as a Mint Julep, definitely worth trying one if only to keep with tradition.

Get a highball glass and fill with crushed ice. Then fill a shaker with ice, add two ounces of vodka, one ounce of peach schnapps, two and a half ounces of fresh squeezed oj, and a splash of cream. Shake it up and strain into the highball, adding soda water to fill to the top. Garnish with a wedge of orange and serve with a nice tall stir stick.

Then, sit down and watch Smarty Jones, Rock Hard Ten and Master David come in first, second and third. That's where my money will be. Well, I might consider playing another ticket with Purge or Eddington.

Now, if you want to move away from tradition, you might consider drinking a Belmont Breeze, the new official cocktail of the Belmont. It was created by Dale de Groff in 1998, to whom we have to defer as the senior cocktail guru.

His creation involves an ounce and a half of blended whiskey, three quarters of an ounce sherry, 2 ounces of good fresh squeezed, sweetened sour mix, one and a half ounces fresh oj and one and a half ounces of cranberry. Shake, pour into highball and garnish with a fresh strawberry and a sprig of mint.

Either way, please enjoy the race responsibly. This means no beer, no white wine spritzers, and definitely nothing resembling a Smirnoff Ice. When you tell your grandchildren you watched Smarty Jones make history, you'll want all the details right.