Bird On A Wire
In 2011, the Chicago Tribune ran The 12 Drinks of Christmas by Lauren Viea, a particularly festive piece in which they “challenged a dozen of our favorite bartenders to create a drinkable homage to ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas.’” The potable representing the all-important partridge in a pear tree anchor verse was inspired by Leonard Cohen’s Bird On A Wire:
By Robert Haynes, The Violet Hour There’s just enough pear liqueur in this bourbon-based wintry tipple to justify the first day of Christmas reference, which is finished with notes of cinnamon. Haynes borrowed from a Leonard Cohen song for the drink’s name. $12; 1520 N. Damen Ave., 773-252-1500; theviolethour.com
2 ounces Wild Turkey 101 bourbon
3/4 ounce lemon juice
3/4 ounce Rothman & Winter Pear liquer
1/2 ounce saigon cinnamon syrup
1/8 ounce simple syrup
1 dash Fees Old Fashioned bitters
Lemon peel garnish
Reserve garnish, combine ingredients in shaker; shake hard.
Strain into rocks glass over one large chunk of ice
Garnish with lemon peel expressed and inserted into drink.
A Drunk in A Midnight Choir
The holiday theme chosen by the folks at Cocktail
Virgin Slut this year is “Humbug!” The explanation follows:
Let’s face it the holidays suck… You put yourself in debt buying crap people will have forgotten about in a month. You drive around like a jackass to see people you don’t even like, or worse they freeload in your house… Plus if you work retail, you’re pretty much in hell, so don’t we all deserve a good stiff drink? The gist was to mix something in the spirit of anti-Christmas (or Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or Festivus) whether it be bitter, really strong, or a traditional holiday drink turned topsy turvy.
The result, inspired both by the above referenced Bird On A Wire cocktail and an admiration for Mr Cohen, is A Drunk in A Midnight Choir:
1 1/2 oz Scotch (Famous Grouse Blended)
3/4 oz Averna
3/4 oz Heavy Cream
1 dash Angostura Bitters
1 Egg Yolk
Shake once without ice and once with ice. Strain into a rocks glass and garnish with freshly grated nutmeg.
The full article elaborates on the choices of ingredients and alternatives.
The Leonard Cohen Mixology Institute
This is not the first time the Canadian singer-songwriter has been the motivation for a cocktail creation. Indeed, Cohen himself is the inventor of the Red Needle:
I prepared a lot of Red Needles. That’s a cocktail I invented in Needles, California, in 1976. It consists of tequila and cranberry juice and Sprite and fresh cut fruit. I prepared pitchers of this cocktail for the musicians and we couldn’t stop playing; most of the takes are twenty-five minutes long, and we kept this one because it’s eight minutes long. I did fall down in it, that’s where the guitar solo occurs. It was a very exuberant, passionate evening, and several musicians told me it was the happiest time they ever spent in a recording studio.
The full story behind the Red Needle and a video of Leonard Cohen preparing the drink can be found at Mixology Video – Leonard Cohen Recreates His Red Needle Drink.
Posts dealing with other cocktails named after Leonard Cohen or his work product follow:
Of course, no Heck Of A Guy post about Christmas libations would be complete without reference to DrHGuy’s personal preference …
The Chocolate Vodka Concept
Ogden Nash, who knew his way around an aphorism, was onto something when he succinctly observed that
Candy is dandy,
But liquor is quicker
Nonetheless, I would hold that the justly esteemed Mr. Nash did not, tragically, explore the full range of options and, consequently his well intended advisory couplet implicitly forces a fallacious one-option-or-the-other-but-not-both choice that, in turn, deplorably excludes from the armamentarium of seduction the liquid joyfulness produced by the skillful blending of candy and liquor.
Gentle reader, would your life be enhanced by an elixir that
- Is intoxicatingly delicious and deliciously intoxicating?
- Makes any event an occasion and any occasion an event – occasionally or eventually?
- Convinces your sweetie that making snow angels naked while you videotape the event qualifies as madcap merriment?
- Persuades you and perhaps even other (also elixir-ingesting) individuals that you are a fuuuuuuunnnnn sort of guy or gal?
- Infuses your empty, barren life with meaning, love, and joy?
Well, Bunkie, if you’ll settle for four out of five, then I’ve got just the thing for you, a little something I like to think of as
The history of this concoction and recipes for the drink (replete with instructional video) as well as for edibles based on this delight can be accessed at The Original Chocolodka.