Tue 27 Feb 2007
Bad news, booze hounds, but it’s official — The New York Times said so — the capital of Cocktail Nation has migrated from New York, specifically Manhattan, to London, where the swinging set indulges in swank Mayfair bars presided over by mixologists — and notice that we use the word nowadays without the irony of an arched eyebrow or raised fingers making invisible “quotation marks” — I say, where the mixologists tender their art in a style combining the best of British tradition with the most avant-garde of world beat concepts and ingredients.
The cocktail revival started in Manhattan, was nurtured and practiced fervently, obsessively on that heady island of hopes and delusions and head-bumping realities, of glitter and glamor and gore, and now to come to this state of decadence and decline? My god, it sounds like a night of watery $25 drinks and stale Goldfish crackers, doesn’t it? Like a long taxi ride with a non-English-speaking driver that starts at 4 a.m. and ends where the Boulevard of Broken Dreams empties into Britney Spears’ underwear drawer.
But don’t despair, former Celebrity Mixologists of Manhattan — and there has to be a guild, right? A club? At least a debating society or choral group? — I have an idea.
Here I propose the names of drinks with which you may conjure the cocktails of the future. I don’t create the recipes; I merely give you the titles of the artful blends that will bring fame back to its rightful place in bars and watering holes of Manhattan, if you are clever — and visionary — enough to handle them. Here are the concepts; now you must let your imaginations run riot and create the cocktails that will send those Brits running for their muddling spoons and lemon zesters.
1. Sit, Boy
2. Mere Immortals
3. Absolutely, Positively One Night
4. Anger of the Modernists
5. The Dangers of Tyranny Lurk in Utopian Dreams, Yet Idealism and Decency May Survive in a Police State
6. Jane Eyre
7. The Rage of Abandonment
8. Happy Birthday, Sheryl Suzanne Crowe!
9. Self-Immolation of Developing Economies
10. Sexy Mousy
One stipulation. Please, don’t use squid ink or pickled okra, especially in the same drink.
For No. 5, apologies to separate stories in The New York Times.