Friday, May 12, 2006

Cocktails for Two

Life's in an uproar.

Our president is listening to our phone calls. Chris Daughtry was tossed off American Idol. Howard Dean's an ass. Rufus Wainwright is channeling Judy Garland at Carnegie Hall. Mary Cheney, the bitch, has written a book no one wants to read. Will & Grace is one episode away from it's conclusion.

I, of course, am concentrating on the important stuff. Reading the New York Times, I came across this.

Children, what are you thinking? Are you all that bored? Are your palates that jaded?

Furthermore, may I say: Yuck.

I'm a simple man. I prefer a simple cocktail. Trust me, a Cosmopolitan is something I find way too fussy and way too modern. Call me a Luddite.

If we're going to have cocktails, these are the rules:


I'd like vodka, please, straight up, very dry, with an olive. By vodka, I mean Stolichnaya, and none of those fruity flavors, if you will. I like Stoli because you can actually taste it, as opposed to Ketel One or Grey Goose. I love the sensation of the first Martini, as that silver ribbon of vodka travels down your throat, saying howdy in turn, to various regions of your alimentary canal. Ahhh. By dry, I mean I want you to pass the bottle of vermouth over the glass in a sort of benediction, but don't actually pour any in. No. I kid. I want you to pour a bit over the ice cubes, coat them and then throw out the excess. That's enough.


I prefer a bourbon Manhattan. And I'm pretty happy with whatever bourbon you have on hand, with the exception of Jack Daniels. Which isn't bourbon anyway. It's sour mash. Marker's Mark, Knob Creek, Wild Turkey, hell...even Rebel Yell will work just fine. Now here you must follow the traditional recipe. If you make it like a Martini, it will be undrinkable. Here's how:

2 parts Bourbon
1 part sweet Italian Vermouth
Dash of bitters
A good cherry

If you make this I will drink several. If you'd like to get me in an amorous mood, give me at least two.

In the heat of summer, I can be tempted to drink Gin and tonic. A gin Martini is purely for those heading down those twelve steps.

On cold winter nights, a wee dram of single malt whiskey is lovely. I'm a fan of Lagavulin and Oban.

Holiday dinners at our house always seem to end with Port. Tawny and 20 years old, please.

Bourbon and soda is a fine drink for hanging out in bars as random as Ty's and the Townhouse. Actually those two are not that random, are they?

And if pushed I will consume Miller Lite by the gallon. Actually, you don't have to push me.

However, if you approach me with a glass of alcohol that's been sweetened with the essence of a lasered vanilla bean, or chilled with nitrogen, combined with agar agar, or otherwise bastardized with such foolish frippery, I may slug you.

There. Doesn't that look refreshing?

I'm going to have at least two of these, and possibly three tonight when I reach Tim's house.

What better way to cast off the day, and unravel the sleeve of care.

I'm so glad I have my very own personal bartender.


Anonymous Matty said...

Hurray for Mark!! Shine on you beacon of civility!

I couldn't agree with you more... although I'm still working on the whole 'scotch' thing. Where I come from, I'm suprised I ever graduated from Busch beer in a can. It's nice to know there's men out there that still drink like MEN.

Save the umbrella's and fruity stuff for a vacation to Tahiti.

5:56 PM  
Blogger seymour said...

Take me drinking daddy x

11:43 PM  
Blogger Will said...

Ah, yes, a cold night and a really fine unblended Scotch. I like the way you drink.

9:55 PM  
Blogger David said...

While I appreciate your purist approach to adult beverages, I had a vodka martini once and will not be venturing into that territory again. Bourbon sounds way too butch for me and if I want the taste of scotch, I can always sample some rubbing alcohol I have in the medicine cabinet. Port? I'll stay adrift at sea, thank you.

I stick with wine and beer and have been quite happy with the simple life I lead. I leave the heavy lifting to you.

1:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

call me nutty but i like beer flavored beer, vodka flavored vodka, coffee flavored coffee (dunkin donuts or a 50 cent cup on 9th aveue) and hairy men. hello. right with you on this one, gorgeous man.

3:05 PM  
Blogger Will said...

Oh, yes--hairy men. Hairy men are good.

4:24 PM  
Blogger farmboyz said...

Although we totally agree with you about the Manhattan recipe, we found an exciting variation in Fort Lauderdale at a restaurant/bar called Trina's.
Same basics, but they used peach bitters (!). These are made exclusively by a NY company called Fee Brothers and are hard to find. I think there is a Brooklyn location where they are available. Also, rather than the usual red Marashino, they used a black cherry. Maybe it was the ocean air, but we loved it, and will let you know if we can recreate it up here some evening.

7:07 AM  
Anonymous Eric said...

I drink gin & tonic year-round, because of my fervent Anglican faith.

The results are sometimes messy, as was the collapse of the British Empire.

12:38 PM  
Blogger MEK the Bear said...

*makes mental note to buy Mark a couple of bourbon Manhattan's should I ever get the chance to meet him*

As for the 'mixology' drinks, I agree. Why would anyone want to drink that?

4:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought "unravel the sleeve of care" was from Macbeth - no?

5:13 AM  
Blogger Mark said...

thank you, correction taken and made.

and if you'd like to let me know who you are, I'll relate the genesis of my mistake.

11:01 AM  
Blogger Bigg said...

I, too, like the way you drink, although in my unorthodox youth I was known to try some less commonplace concoctions. If you're ever trapped in a bomb shelter with a less-than-ideal liquor supply, remember that tequila mixed with peach schapps will pretty much blind you.

4:24 PM  
Blogger Nate The Great said...

You may smack me, but I love a good cosmo, esp if its mostly Vodka, a little cuentraou (or however you spell it) fresh squeezed lime and whatever cranberry juice you have room left for in the shaker.

That said I am totally using your Manhattan recipe this holiday season. My mom and I love out Manhattans, it's really the only civilized way to deal with a large convergence of family members in one room.

3:42 PM  

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