Yes, yes, yes. It's all party party party around here right now.
And I love a cocktail.
I have probably always loved cocktails, but they didn't have them when I was younger. Not really. One was just supposed to drink distilled spirits, and generic, commercial beer. There was wine though. A person could drink good wine if interested.
The closest thing to the modern cocktail we had in, say, the ending decades of the 20th Century, outside of a few drops of dry vermouth in one's gin, was maybe the Tiki Bar. These were cute bars where one could get violently colored (and tasting) drinks made from the cheapest rums, liqueurs, and canned juices.
So not very close.
The contrast with the modern is extraordinary. The places I have been going out to this past weekend have amazing cocktails with astonishing ingredients. I have a reasonably good knowledge of liqueurs, historical drinks, and unusual alcohols, but I am regularly thrown for a loop in any ingredient list on these cocktail menus. And the adventure in taste can be greater than with any of the food, as good as that sometimes is.
I love a cocktail. And I am curiously full of trust when it comes to these. I find when ordering one I have become less inclined to choose what I like, and more inclined to choose based on pure bewilderment. Here is a list of some of the evocative cocktail components on the drinks menus of where I have been this last weekend:
Brown butter wash
Tattersall bitter orange
Banane du Bresil
Rainwater and Malmsey Madeira
Tarragon boozy simple saline
cherry smoked velvet falernum
oscar quevedo flowers
Well, it goes on. And how does it taste?
I'm actually not sure...
And now, as my favorite cocktail youtuber says, to the bar!
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