Sunday, November 14, 2004

It was pointed out to me that I was missing the gin in my post on the Corpse Reviver #2, which is embarassing, but only half as embarassing as the fact that when I made the drink for that very same person who noticed the missing gin, I omitted the lemon juice entirely.

The lemon juice, after all, is a fairly key ingredient. In my defense, we'd had three martinis beforehand. One was made with Hendrick's gin, one with Plymouth and another with a French gin called Citadelle which was imported specially for the martini experiment. Althought the Citadelle was lovely, light and spring-like, and made with 19 exotic botanicals, the Hendrick's still won out. It's very distinct juniper-lavender-with-a-cucumber-finish is just very lovely for those who like that kind of thing. Plymouth, it was declared, was very English. It makes for a very fine, crisp, classic martini.

So, we'd have liked to have had a Bombay Sapphire martini for one final comparison but I knew I only had one more cocktail in me and it had to be the Corpse Reviver #2. Now, without the lemon, it is not really a Corpse Reviver #2 at all, but strangely enough, my friend really enjoyed it. In fact, when I fixed it, she declared she preferred the earlier version. Next time, I will experiment with a half an ounce of lemon juice.

Since all this transpired, Dr. Cocktail has sent me some vaulable feedback and a new cocktail recipe for the Twentieth Century Cocktail. Last night I finally tried this new concoction and declared it to be quite lovely. Doc advises using half an ounce of Creme de Cacao rather than three quarters and says we might want to play around with a little less. I quite agree. At first, all I could taste was chocolate, although, it did have a strange way of dissapearing after the second or so sip. And, it was sort of chocolatey on the top with a different middle and finish. Quite interesting. Thank you, Doc.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Big Night

Well, a lot of people are surely going to want to know what the appropriate cocktail for the evening is. I hear there's a lot of NDPers planning to gather at Rowers to watch the election tonight, so we can count on there being a lot of water and the occasional bland and light microbrew being consumed down there.

But what about the rest of us? Well, this article claims that, in Washington, people are drinking either the W-tini or the Kerry Berry, both of which sound, frankly, disgusting. But, then again, I'm against flavoured vodkas. I mean, I'm pretty much opposed to vodka period, except in the occasional Bloody Caesar, so these new-fangled concoctions only make me harden my resolve. Vanilla, raspberry and mandarin, what's next, roast chicken?

Speaking of disgusting, check out the drink for the Democratic party at this site. Stoli Peach and Iced Tea? That's enough to make you switch parties.

If I were planning a party at home, I'd make Manhattans. They have a long history of being associated with close elections which I'd tell you about but I don't want to scoop myself in Mondo Cocktail. But as I'm going to be out at a friend's and don't want to carry around a bottle of bourbon, a bottle of sweet vermouth and Angostura Bitters all day long, I'm going to have to settle for some Maker's Mark. A truly American drink.

Another alternative is the Ward Eight. Essentially a modified Bourbon Sour, this drink was invented on the eve of an election. I read recently here that there is a sad irony connected with the Ward Eight, however:

Lomansey (the Democrat for whom the cocktail was invented) was an ardent prohibitionist, and when the drought hit, the owner of the Locke-Ober - who begrudgingly honored Prohibition - closed the bar area of the establishment until the early 1950s. Fortunately, the Ward Eight weathered Prohibition much better, and in 1934, the drink was deemed one of the 10 best cocktails of the year by Esquire.

That detail leaves a sour taste in my mouth and I admit I could not really enjoy a Ward Eight knowing all that. Plus, why mess up a perfectly good Bourbon Sour by adding grenadine?

Really, so long as it's not a Negroni, enjoy any cocktail you like to get into the spirit of the election. The cocktail is a uniquely American invention and a perfect way to celebrate this evening's excitement.