|Cucumber gimlet at the Vinoy.|
Which puts me in an interesting position: I don't drink, but I'm writing a
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So, I've been trying various cocktails, trying to find one I can tolerate. I can deal with pina coladas (well, weak ones), but they weren't invented yet.So, I've been trying drinks that come closer to the recipes of the 1920s.
Experiment 1: We visited the Jungle Prada Tavern, better known in the 1920s as The Gangplank, a nightclub supposedly owned by Al Capone.
The pub food was great, but the drink I tried was far too strong for my dainty palate (the same one I eat Cheetos with). This was one of the milder rum drinks, plus I told the waitress to only put in half the booze they would normally use. I'm sure they did, but I felt my tastebuds shrink from the shock. Better luck next time, I told myself.
Experiment 2: We visited the Vinoy, which is a grand hotel in the old style. It also existed in 1926 St. Petersburg. This time, I experimented with gin. It was a common ingredient in the cocktails of that time. I tried the cucumber gimlet, which included Hendrick's Gin. The cucumber slice garnish was nice, but the drink tasted like medicine. Some research on the Hendrick's web site told me why: while the main flavors are supposed to be cucumber and rose petals (!), there were several infused botanicals I recognized from my days of imbibing herbal medicines. None of them tasted good.
I haven't decided what to try for Experiment 3. Maybe I'll just tell people I'm in recovery, and hope they'll take me at my word.
Available January 16th!