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Monster in a Glass
Not Only History of Cocktails, but History Through Cocktails
Category: History
Location: http://blackliverproject.com/
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April 12, 2018 08:54 AM PDT

A name like the Jupiter Cocktail immediately evokes images of the enormous planet with the great swirling storms and the Roman king of the gods, with thunderbolt in hand. The cocktail indicates power, something greater than all. I would expect ten different kinds of liquor served in a barrel, full of lighting, and on fire…or it could be just a martini with some Parfait Amour and orange juice.

Join us as discuss this stormy-colored drink and its standout ingredient Parfait Amour. We also try to figure out whether the inspiration was a god, a planet, or maybe even a World War I ship.

The ingredients are:

1 and ½ ounces gin
¾ ounce dry vermouth
1 teaspoon Parfait Amour
1 teaspoon orange juice

March 29, 2018 05:58 AM PDT

Jasper’s Jamaican Planter’s Punch is a more contemporary take on an old drink called simply, Planter’s Punch. Resembling punches of the colonial-era, Planter’s Punch appears to have originated in the Caribbean in the early to mid-1800s. Where exactly in the Caribbean is the question, since most references just point to the “West Indies.”

The unusual thing about this drink is that there did not seem to be a standard recipe. Rum, lime, and sugar were the common ingredients among Planter’s Punches, but the rest of the recipe varied greatly.

Join us as we explore whether this punch could be a product of Jamaica, or from a neighboring island nation. We also take a look at its relation to other types of colonial punches, and try to figure out what the Planter’s in the Planter’s Punch means.

March 15, 2018 08:31 AM PDT

Do you like cocktails that are named after a 19th century varnish? Then step right up to the bar and order a Japalac Cocktail. That’s right folks, nothing says quenching your thirst like old lacquer!

This recipe shows up first and only in Albert Stevens Crockett’s Old Waldorf Bar Days (1931). It was another creation of Johnnie Solon, of Bronx Cocktail fame. Was Johnnie famous for anything other than creating the Bronx Cocktail? Well, Crockett will tell you he was also known for a Mint Julep that took 30 minutes to make! This episode explores why a cocktail named after varnish wasn’t picked up by other bartenders at the time, historically sexist advertising methods, and what actually may have been going on at the Waldorf Bar with Mr. Johnnie Solon.

Juice of ¼ orange
¾ ounce dry vermouth
¾ ounce rye whiskey
1 teaspoon raspberry syrup
Combine in an iced cocktail shaker, and shake and strain into a small cocktail glass

March 01, 2018 06:17 AM PST

The Jack Rose Cocktail ingredients look like a deconstructed fruit bowl, bringing together Applejack, lemon juice (or sometimes lime juice), and grenadine. Dating back to the early 20th century, Cocktail Bill Boothby appears to have brought it to print, but attributes it to New York bartender R.H. Townes.

The name is a bit of a mystery. Is it a pairing of the jack in Applejack and its rose color? Or from a type of rose? Maybe it was created in reference to the gambling house owner and alleged member of the mafia, Jacob Rozenzweig, AKA, Baldy Jack Rose?

Join us as we explore the origins of the drink, and what it might be named after, and the corrupt underworld of New York in the early 1900s.

February 15, 2018 08:33 AM PST

It is hard to imagine why you would want to name a drink after something that the great majority of the world hates, but here we are with the Income Tax Cocktail. Harry Craddock appears to be the person who wanted to remind people that the government is coming for your hard-earned money, so you should probably drown your sorrows.

This drink does not show up in very many places, but is often said to be just a Bronx Cocktail with Angostura bitters, which in turn is said to just be a perfect Martini with orange juice. So it is, and we don’t have a lot to go on with the cocktail itself. So our attention is turned to that exciting topic, TAXES!

We dive into the origins of income taxes and the 16th Amendment that made it all possible. This one actually turned out to be much more of a tangled web than we anticipated, involving the temperance movement, farmers, WWI, and President Woodrow Wilson. So join us as we explore this cocktail with an unfortunate name, and the possibility of income taxes being the real cause of, and end of U.S. prohibition.

February 01, 2018 11:49 AM PST

The Honeymoon Cocktail seems to first appear in Hugo Ensslin’s Recipes for Mixed Drinks (1917), and contains an unusually sweet and fruit-based combination of ingredients, calling for Apple Brandy, lemon juice, curacao, and Benedictine. We take a look at what Benedictine is and how the Honeymoon Cocktail encountered a swapping out of the Apple Brandy for Calvados and more Apple Jack.

We also explore the history of honeymoons, where the term originated, and origin myths surrounding this tradition in relation to marriage.

January 18, 2018 11:36 AM PST

With very few appearances in cocktail books, or really anywhere, it is probably fair to say that the “Have a Heart” cocktail didn’t make much of a splash at all. It seems originate from, and really only appears in Patrick Gavin Duffy’s The Official Mixer’s Manual (1934).

The quotation marks allude to it being the title of something, but of what is hard to say. Some say that it is after a film of the same name, but the publishing of the drink recipe is the same year the movie came out, so maybe not so much. We take a look at the possibility of it being named after a 1917 musical, and Duffy’s connection to the theater prior to prohibition.

PGD has made so many appearances in our podcast, but we never really explored his book and how it came to be. So we discuss the man, the book, the legend and how he might have encountered a whole lot of actors in his days as a bartender.

The recipe is as follows:

1 and ½ ounces gin
¾ ounces Swedish Punsch
¾ ounces lime juice
¼ ounce grenadine

January 04, 2018 06:26 AM PST

The product of a cocktail competition in London, the Golden Dawn is a boozy drink, almost entirely made up of Calvados, Brandy, and Gin. A newspaper article from 1930 mentions that cocktail purists were not happy with this drink winning the competition, simply because of the addition of fruit juice. We delve into the idea of what a cocktail is and isn’t, where the argument may have started, and why anyone really cares.

Some point to the origin of the name deriving from a Rodgers & Hammerstein operetta, but it most likely received its name from the orange juice and grenadine giving it the color of a sunrise. Since it would be difficult to tackle the history of sunrises, we explore the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, because Golden Dawn.

This spiritualist group largely influenced occultism in the 20th century, had a membership that included a number of well-known people of the time, and was semi-revolutionary for a secret society by allowing women to become members. One of the most notable members was Aleister Crowley, who rose in the ranks quickly, had a falling out with one of the founders of the Golden Dawn, and how the two allegedly engaged in psychic battles for years.

So join us as we discuss this pretty cocktail/not cocktail, as well as magic, mysticism, controlling nature, and Crowley’s goth kid poetry.

3/4 oz Calvados
3/4 oz gin
3/4 oz apricot-flavored brandy
3/4 oz orange juice

May 29, 2017 01:17 PM PDT

Some say the Brandy Crusta is distinct enough to be considered an entirely different type of drink than a cocktail. Others say it is just a variation on or an evolution of a true cocktail. When it really comes down to it, having this kind of argument is just going to end up with you having a warm drink and a sad face. Going all the way back to the 1840s, this is one of the older drinks we have explored. The basic ingredients of brandy, lemon, lemon peel and the sugar crusted rim seem to stay consistent as time goes on, but the other ingredients start changing almost as soon as it starts showing up in recipe books. Curacao and maraschino liqueur make appearances in different recipes, as does gum syrup and various types of bitters, and hell, throw some fruit in there for good measure!

For once, we have a drink that does not have a dispute over who created. With the great majority of information pointing to Joseph Santini out of New Orleans and no one else claiming ownership, we should be done looking at this one, right? Well, exactly where, when, and why he created it depends on the source. We find that a lot of the details on the origin require some parsing and piecing to get closer to the truth. So we dig deeper into Santini and just what he was doing in mid-19th century New Orleans. Was he a bartender? Bar manager? Café owner? Tobaccoist? Wine importer? Yes, probably all of that. And add super-businessman, mason, and reformer who cared a whole lot about New Orleans.

We don’t care if it is a cocktail or not, so join us as we try to nail down the origin story of the Brandy Crusta.

January 18, 2016 12:45 PM PST

passion fruit flowerThis was a fun episode.  The cocktail itself had a fairly ordinary background, so we made the most of it by disparaging passion fruit and spotlighting the UK Bartenders' Guild. The drink itself appears first (and only) in the Cafe Royal cocktail book which for the first time we discuss as part of the drinks compilation project the UK Bartenders' Guild took on in the 1930s. This drink is itself remarkable because it's the only one we've seen that features passion fruit juice and the Cafe Royal cocktail book is equally remarkable because it's the only cocktail recipe book that features passion fruit juice at the time...and it does so 37 times. So we decided to focus on passion fruit since we knew nothing about it. We also sample some real grenadine and orange flower water. The Avenue cocktail contains:

  • 1 oz bourbon
  • 1 oz Calvados
  • 1 oz passion fruit
  • 1 dash of grenadine
  • 1 dash orange flower water

Despite the lack of information on this cocktail, it was delicious. The team generally did enjoy this drink, appreciating a break from gin for this fruit forward beverage with a bourbon base. Nicole also pointed out where one could find the Passion of the Christ in the passion fruit flower.

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