While Rome Burns

The Drink

 

The town crier proclaims that half a dozen of these will improve your fiddling, help you remember the wisecracks of Dorothy Parker, and may even lead you to retelling the story of Christmas on the front.

1 PART LEMON JUICE
2 PARTS MEDFORD RUM
1 DASH OF MAPLE SYRUP

-from So Red the Nose

RomeBurnsWe’ve discussed before how fortuitous it is that I started this blog just as New England rums were making an 80-years-delayed comeback, and that goes double for Medford rum, which – despite its immense popularity in the 18th Century – I had a hell of a time tracking down in the 21st. The GrandTen rep I spoke to on the phone claimed they only sell a few thousand bottles a year. So thanks so much to my East Coast contact* for hunting some down for me in Boston. Continue reading

Headed for a Hearse

The Drink

hearse

Jonathan Latimer…states that his Headed for a Hearse Cocktail is quite as deadly as it sounds.

The equipment necessary are a water tumbler, some crushed ice, and a stout heart; also Pernod and some very old Bourbon. Place the ice in a strainer and pour into the tumbler two jiggers of the Bourbon. Similarly drip through the ice an equal quantity of Pernod. Add a quarter of a tumbler of cold water.

– From So Red the Nose

And here we have another authorly drink in which absinthe is the first and strongest flavor. Although maybe that won’t be true if you actually use “very old brandy” as instructed, but for me, very old = very expensive. I guess my brandy counts as old to you if you’re eight. Continue reading

The Case of the Caretaker’s Cat

CaretakersCat

The Drink

1 JIGGER* ITALIAN VERMOUTH
1 JIGGER GIN
1 PONY** RUM
1/2 PONY GRENADINE
4 DASHES LIME JUICE

“Shake, pour, imbibe, kick the cat and send for the caretaker.”

– From So Red the Nose

* 1.5 ounces
** 1 ounce

I think there’s this idea that drinkers in the 1930’s just didn’t do sweet and fruity — that a stiff brandy with a lime wedge constituted a cocktail, and a dry martini was their idea of light and feminine. But that’s not really true. My experience has been the mid century liked a little sweetness, so long as it was heavy, rich, and of a consistency just a tad thinner than Pepto-Bismol. Continue reading

Sing Sing Nights

IMG_1499 (2)The Drink

We can almost see the warden, the captain of the guards, and a couple of gentlemen in striped coveralls singing “Sweet Adeline” and imbibing the Sing Sing Nights Cocktail devised by Harry Stephen Keeler.

1 PONY* OF PURE GRAIN ALCOHOL
1 1/2 TEASPOONS OF SUGAR SYRUP
1 1/2 TEASPOONS PURE ORANGE JUICE
Shake with 3 Ice Cubes till at least Half of the bulk of the Cubes has dissolved.

-From So Red the Nose

* =shot

For the grain alcohol I used Everclear because, well, you know. It’s what’s at the store, and I’m not quite to the point of raiding the medicine cabinet yet. Simple syrup can be made easily enough, and the juice was squeezed right from the fruit into my cocktail shaker, as per Keeler’s instructions. If you do make this drink, take that part about the ice cubes seriously; grain alcohol of any brand isn’t something to mess around with. Continue reading