There is so much going on in the world of spiritous drinks, sometimes I just have to devote a column to trends and happenings. For instance, did you know that folks are being offended when servers presume that the pink Cosmo is for the girl and the draft beer is intended for the guy?
That’s right … if the person delivering your drinks is not the same person who took the order, you may be the “victim” of gender discrimination. The server is likely to assume the frothy bright pink cocktail is for the lady. Wrong, wrong, wrong! This would not offend me because often my wife and I have non-traditional entrée orders. My wife is a carnivore and is much more likely to order the steak, whereas I am more content with the pasta, or chicken, or even (gasp!) the quiche.
It has seldom happened to me personally, as I do (in masculine stereotype) tend to order more potent cocktails than my bride. But I don’t think I’d be offended if the server presumed I wanted the straight-up Makers Mark, when in fact I’d ordered the watermelon daiquiri. Yes, with the sugared rim and why not, I say! Frankly, if one is looking to be offended it seems it is easy to be these days. I find life too short to worry about gender discrimination in my choice of libation. As long as I get my drink, or at least some drink, in a timely fashion, I’m likely happy.
In other news, as Mardi Gras has just passed, I learned of a gigantic cocktail at the legendary Pat O’Brien’s in New Orleans that would quench the thirst of several genders. The Magnum Hurricane is an enormous incarnation of the ubiquitous N’Awlins cocktail. It is so enormous that descriptions of the size range from 3 liters to 3 gallons (look up your metric system – that is a big difference). Apparently drinking one of these bad boys impairs one’s ability to measure. Suffice to say, it’s a lot. And for just $200 you and a number of friends, of either gender, can enjoy the rum and fruit-juicy concoction — and keep the humongous glass.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, I read about some “glamour cocktails” at the Baccarat Hotel in New York. In The Bar, one can experience “les boissons” that are both unique and extraordinarily expensive. None, safe to say, are served in gallon or even liter decanters; instead all are presented in exquisite Baccarat crystal glassware of normal proportions. If you’re not familiar with this high-end French glassware, let’s just say it gives new meaning to “high-end.” I splurged some years back on a set of Waterford tumblers. I saw on the internet that four Baccarat glasses in different patterns, such as those in The Bar, retail for $490. I’m glad I opted for Irish glassware — so I could still afford a liquid to pour into them!
Anyway, at the Baccarat Hotel, one can enjoy a L’Abricot Sour for a mere $42. In a small glass, I might add. At The Bar the drink is mixed with Remy Martin 1738 cognac and L’Abricot Rouler apricot liqueur — and it comes with a saffron macaron, an apricot truffle and a white-chocolate and pistachio dipped apricot. I should say so — as these little accompaniments are likely to be my dinner. It reminds me of an experience I had long ago at the Ritz Carlton in Buckhead, where I enjoyed a number of Bombay Sapphire martinis and contented myself with the complimentary mixed nuts for my meal.
For a more proletariat version of the quite nice Apricot Sour try this:
2 oz. apricot brandy
1 oz. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. superfine sugar
Pour the apricot brandy, lemon juice and sugar into a cocktail glass half-filled with ice cubes. Shake well, and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange wedge and a maraschino cherry, and serve.
If you have no choice but to use Libby glassware I can happily say it’ll still be delicious.
Finally, at the risk of being sexist, or gender discriminatory, I ran across a recipe in Southern Living that sounds like the perfect spring cocktail. Don’t be swayed by the name, guys will like it too. Especially if you serve up some hearty quiche as an accompaniment.
Girls Night Out Cocktail
1 — 12 oz. can frozen limeade, thawed
3-½ cups cold water
½ cup liquid from jarred maraschino cherries
2 cups sparkling water (I used San Pellegrino)
½ cup blanco tequila
¼ cup Cointreau orange liqueur
Rub rims of 8 chilled glasses with lime wedges, and dip rims in salt to coat, if desired.
Stir together limeade concentrate and 3-1/2 cups cold water; add liquid from maraschino cherries, tequila and orange liqueur.
Fill prepared glasses with ice. Pour limeade mixture into glasses, filling each two-thirds full; add sparkling water to fill.
Garnish with lime wedges and a maraschino cherry or two.
Enjoy what you like regardless of gender stereotypes. Now … excuse me while I finish my very manly single malt Scotch poured neat in a Solo cup, accompanied by a Slim Jim.