I have forgotten whole chapters of my life. Seriously, I am not sure who to blame, it’s probably me, but it is not that unusual for friends to begin telling stories of things I have, allegedly, done that I have no recollection of, whatsoever. Usually, when some details get dropped in I make the connection and it all comes flying back to me. Digging those memories out and dusting them off is always fun. Kind like meeting an old friend, even if that old friend is just an earlier version of me. So in honor of the people we were, won’t you please join me now as we stand and make, the Blue Corvette.
Ferris was right, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while you could miss it.” This year is flying by and I am pretty sure that I have missed a ton of things already. I took couple of days off from writing at the end of last year and then a few more after we flipped the calendar. I had planned to make this drink on New Year’s Day, but instead I went hiking with the family, without giving the first thought to what you, gentle reader, would do without my musings on the day. I don’t feel a bit bad about that. In fact, I am pretty sure it is going to happen way more in the coming months. Rest assured that then you don’t hear me shouting into the dark it is because I am out living life, rather than reflecting about it. It’s a balance, as they say. I did not want to lose this drink though, so we are going to pick it up and insert it into the rotation this week as if we never missed it. So, won’t you please join me now as we stand and make, Set the New Year On Fire.
What the actual fuck, y’all? This is not fine. It seems kinda silly to make a drink, even though I feel we may need it more than we ever have. The funny thing is, I have known what drink I was going to make tonight, for a while. I assumed that today would be kinda crazy and full of grandstanding politicians, but who could imagine this horrible result? So, please join me as we stand and make the Scorched Earth.
We turn to Shakespeare for the text of todays’s lesson. Please turn in your hymnals to Much Ado About Nothing, Act 5, Scene 1, where we find Antonio attempting to comfort Leonato, who is having none of it. And he spake, “I pray thee peace, I will be flesh and blood; For there was never yet philosopher that could endure the toothache patiently.” I get it, Leonato was upset and why not, they had just accused his daughter of “knowing the heat of a luxurious bed”. Shocking, I know. The point is, he was angry and when cautioned to not indulge his self pity and fury he told Antonio to step off and let a man have his space. I get that too. That toothache thing always stuck with me, the simple wisdom of it. It is true, no matter how many high platitudes we speak and how detached and above the fray we want to be, when something as simple as a toothache makes things personal, our true colors show. Whether sharp or dull, a toothache can just sort of linger there, a reminder that all is not well. Reminding you that you don’t control much in life, even your own body. So, please join me now and explore the bitter and the sweet, as we stand and make the Lucien Gaudin.
I’m keeping it booze forward this week. Sure, I broke you in with a nice tiki thing for election day but from there on out it has been in your face, stirred drinks with a hefty alcohol component. Anyone have any problems with this? Seriously, if you don’t feel like you need a drink this week give me some tips on your stress management policies. Hopefully things will settle out in the next few days and we can get some closure. For me, a gentle buzz before bed is a welcome relief from the onslaught of misinformation and ugliness. Passions are running high, but that is no reason to be unpleasant in front of company. So, in honor of decorum and a certain savior-faire, won’t you join me now as we stand and make the classic, Boulevardier.
I was thinking about the devil tonight and his gambling habit. Seemed like the right thing to do, don’t ask me why. I recalled the lyric “Now, you play a pretty mean fiddle boy…” and thought to myself, what constitutes a “mean fiddle”? Does it bite? Refuse the rosin? Whisper insults in your ear while you play? It would make more sense for the devil to be the one playing the mean fiddle, then I would understand it better. A mean fiddle is one that refuses to sound like a violin and goes with a funky bass thing. You’d be surprised just how long I went down this path, before I came up for air. It was definitely long enough to get a thirst, so won’t you join me now as we stand and make The Mean Fiddler.
It’s another bartenders handshake. So if you haven’t embraced the bitter, this one is not for you. Hell, it’s got Campari, so it may not be for me, but that is not going to stop us from making it. I’ll probably ramble on a bit about having to take the bitter with the sweet, maybe compare some films, who knows? I certainly don’t. Doesn’t really matter though, this is the drink we are making, these are the words I am writing and while I hope that you enjoy both, it’s really out of my hands at this point. So won’t you join me now as we stand and make The Last Man Standing.
You know how things are fun, how you look forward to them, but one day those same things just become daunting and you dread having to actually do them? No? Huh? Just me, then. Ok. Well, I am glad you aren’t afflicted with this crippling fear, but I hope you can expand your imagination enough to relate. You ever have one of those days where you start a conversation, you can’t even finish it? I mean, you’re talking a lot, but you’re not even saying anything. This is one of those days for me. I am tense and nervous and I can’t relax because it is my buddy Jenn’s birthday. That means I need to find a drink that encapsulates what she means to me and then write nice-ish things about her. I have done it for other folks, and it feels like a thing I do now. It just sort of happened organically the first couple times, but now that it is a thing, I get worried about it. Weird, huh? So, it is only natural, that I should extend this courtesy to Jenn, it is the polite thing to do and I hate people when they are not polite. So join me now, as we stand and make a drink that just screams Jenn, the Psycho Killer.
We stumbled upon this one a couple of weeks ago and it caught my attention. It comes from the Milk & Honey bar in New York and is a cross between a Negroni and a Gin Sour. I don’t care for Negronis, but I love Gin Sours, so I thought that maybe this one was for me, plus it is said to be “the ideal drink to introduce a novice to Campari!” Since, I have struggled with Campari I figured I’d give it a shot, plus it has whole white grapes in it and when I got home I found that Laura had gotten fresh white grapes at the store today, I figured it was a sign. So, join me as we stand and make, the Enzoni.
Jimmy said there’d be “good days and bad days and going half mad days” and I suppose it is true. I know that I have more than my fair share of half-mad days. I have had some damned good days though, along the way. Today, I am thinking about one of them in particular. One of my weird best days, a day on the road, seeking adventure and passing the time on the north coast of Africa in Tunisia. On this particular day, I remember drinking mint tea, plenty of that, some lovely Carthaginian White Wine and a refreshing gin and tonic, along with several liters of water. It was hot, dreadfully so. When I think of that wonderful day, I always think of a particular drink, one that I, not only, did not have that day but that did not even cross my sun-dazzled mind. We will get to the why in a bit, but first, join me as we stand and make, the Negroni.