Mixer Mania #26 – Cocktail Leaders

The Caesar – featuring Clamato Juice – is a very popular drink in Canada and that got me thinking about beverages named after historical rulers. Here are some of those concoctions and the men (and one woman) who inspired them:

Winston Churchill

The Churchill combines Scotch, lime juice, sweet vermouth, and Cointreau, and was created for the man himself, by bartender Joe Gilmore of the American Bar in London’s Savoy Hotel. Apparently, Churchill preferred Johnnie Walker in his servings. There are other drinks named after and inspired by the British Bulldog (highlighted by this slide show article), but this is the definitive entry.

Richard Nixon

Another creation to come from Joe Gilmore and the Savoy Hotel’s American Bar, the Nixon was actually compiled at the bar and then sent over to Claridge’s Hotel, where president Nixon was staying during a 1969 visit to the UK. Made using bourbon, sloe gin and peach bitters, this is a cocktail I have yet to try, but sounds pretty good.

Nixon Not a Crook

Queen Mary I

While the Bloody Mary beverage has been attributed to a few different people, the general consensus is that it belongs to this queen, who earned her ominous nickname through countless executions of Protestants during a five-year reign over England and Ireland. I’ve never much cared for the tomato juice-based Bloody Mary, greatly preferring a Caesar, instead.

Abraham Lincoln

Although the tragic American president was assassinated in 1865, it wasn’t until 1900 that the man was immortalized in cocktail form with the President Lincoln. The recipe, which first appeared in San Francisco’s Pacific Wine and Spirit Review, mixes bourbon, simple syrup, orange curacao, orange bitters, absinthe and club soda.

Abraham Lincoln Quote.jpg

Napoleon Bonaparte

When you have a liquor created in your honour, as the French Emperor did with Mandarin Cognac, why not have a cocktail bear your name as well. Ironically, the Napoleon doesn’t contain cognac and is instead built with gin, orange liqueur and vermouth. I wonder if that would add to the little man’s complex!?

Theodore Roosevelt

The rugged adventurer, who would come to have stuffed bears everywhere named after him, can also lay claim to having his very own cocktail. Returning to New York after a 15-month hunting trip in East Africa, Roosevelt was greeted with a drink. While the original ingredients are forgotten, a beverage of dark rum, dry vermouth, orange juice and simple syrup has taken its place.

Mixer Mania #26: A Curious Feeling

A Curious Feeling.JPG

  • 2 oz Gin
  • 1 oz Coffee Liqueur
  • Top with Orange Juice
  • Splash of Clamato Juice
  • Dash of Angostura Bitters
  • Pinch Brown Sugar
  • Garnish with a Cucumber Slice

Apparently, the fast track to having a cocktail named after you is to become president of the United States… seems easy enough!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
Given the cocktail’s name and ingredients, I was a little leery of what to expect. It ended up being pretty good, with the Clamato Juice (a Bacon-flavoured variety I recently discovered) playing a MVP role.

Cocktail Corner – Fashionably Late

Here’s Looking At You

For my birthday in September, I took a look at the best of 1983. To celebrate Mrs. Sip’s anniversary today, I decided we should delve into her birth year of 1984. Yes, on top of being more successful and better looking, Mrs. Sip is younger than yours truly. So, what do I bring to the table… sweet posts like this! I’ll be looking at the year in regards to what impacted Mrs. Sip the most, rather than myself. So, while 1984 was amazing for TV show debuts (The Cosby Show, Transformers, Murder She Wrote, Night Court), those series matter more to me, than her. On with the list and again, happy birthday, honey!:

#5: MAC Make-Up Launches

While Mrs. Sip is a natural beauty, the minimal make-up she uses is often from MAC and when she really wants to get gussied up for a special event, she lets the artists at the company do their thing. I am no cosmetics expert, but I can only assume they make fine products if Mrs. Sip and others have committed their time and financial resources to them. Not that she needs the help, but Mrs. Sip certainly looks stunning after applying MAC wares.

makeup lipsticks

#4: Legal Taping Using Betamax

Growing up, Mrs. Sip had a regular routine that consisted of coming home from school, napping, doing her homework, and then staying up late watching TV shows she had taped from earlier, before repeating the process. Well, that would have never been possible had the Betamax not won a 1984 legal battle versus Universal City Studios, which allowed home videotaping to be legalized. Given Mrs. Sip’s profession as a lawyer, a landmark legal decision seems perfect for this article.

#3: Movie Releases

1984 was an amazing year for feature films, with hits like Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, Ghostbusters, Gremlins, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Revenge of the Nerds, Beverly Hills Cop, Police Academy, and many more all hitting the big screen. Many of these movies are beloved by Mrs. Sip, particularly Indiana Jones and Gremlins. All that’s missing is a Star Wars movie and you might have been able to call this the most important year in 80’s cinema.

Indiana Jones Temple Run

#2: Craft Breweries Open in B.C.

With the opening of both Granville Island Brewing and Vancouver Island Brewing (clearly, the islands knew something long before the rest of the province) craft beer arrived in British Columbia and while Mrs. Sip and I weren’t drinking back then, their hard work established a growing movement which we would finally be able to enjoy much later. While wine is still Mrs. Sip’s beverage of choice, she has become a craft beer junkie just like the Sip Advisor.

#1: Cirque du Soleil is Founded

Mrs. Sip is a huge fan of Cirque du Soleil productions, having seen a number of the Las Vegas-based shows, as well as big top performances here at home. Before hitting the international stage, Cirque du Soleil grew from a small touring operation in Quebec, Canada. Today, their combination of circus, theatrics, costumes, atmosphere, and music is loved the world over. Among Mrs. Sip’s favourite Cirque shows are O, Ka, and Love, proving it doesn’t take a long title to make a great experience.

Cocktail Corner: Fashionably Late

Jan 19

  • 1.5 oz Whiskey
  • 1 oz Port
  • Top with Cranberry Juice
  • Dash of Angostura Bitters
  • Garnish with an Orange Twist

Mrs. Sip shares her birth year with such dignitaries as Scarlett Johansson and LeBron James. Some honourable mentions for 1984, include Michael Jackson’s Thriller album, Michael Jordan being drafted into the NBA, the creation of Tetris, and the birth of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in comic form. At least the actual 1984 didn’t turn out like the classic George Orwell novel, which showed the world in a state of dystopia. That said, 1984 brought the birth of crack cocaine, as well as the discovery of the AIDS virus, so maybe the novel wasn’t that far off.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This drink is, of course, in honour of the habitually late Mrs. Sip. I used Vanilla Spiced Whiskey in favour of Bourbon and that added a whole bonus flavour to the cocktail. My Port choice came from Backyard Vineyards, where Mrs. Sip is a member. Everything came together quite nicely for a refreshing, interesting martini.

Flavour Revolution – Cucumber

Cold-Blooded

The term “cool as a cucumber” comes from the fact that cucumbers are known to actually cool the blood. Someone who shows a similar disposition to a cucumber, remaining cool under pressure, is usually given the nickname Iceman… and there are a lot of these folks. Let’s take a look at some of the dudes (there doesn’t seem to be any women on the list) who have ice in their veins:

Chuck Liddell

Liddell is a retired Mixed Martial Arts fighter and Ultimate Fighting Championship legend, holding the record for most knockouts in the company’s history at 13. Liddell has capitalized on his Iceman moniker, opening a memorabilia store called The Ultimate Iceman in 2010, as well as titling his autobiography Iceman: My Fighting Life. There is also Iceman Fight Gear, which is designed based on Liddell’s suggestions.

Chuck Liddell

Kimi Räikkönen

The Formula 1 driver was given the nickname Iceman for a number of reasons, including the frigid temperatures of his native Finland, his cool as a cucumber demeanor on the race track, and his often standoffish relationship with fellow racers, media, and even his own team. I’m not sure how much weight a nickname holds when you give it to yourself, but Räikkönen does have 20 wins under his belt.

Retief Goosen

The South African professional golfer is more likely to be called ‘Goose,’ but he’s also known by ‘Iceman’ for his calm, poised behaviour while on the links. Interestingly, both of Goosen’s nicknames also belong to characters from the movie Top Gun. Goosen’s mom credits her son’s conduct on him being struck by lightning at the age of 15, while golfing with a friend. That event would definitely change your perspective.

Richard Kuklinski

It’s not often that a contract killer gets lumped together with sports stars, but Kuklinski’s method of freezing his victims, to throw off their time of death for investigators, earned him this dubious handle. Kuklinski estimates that he murdered anywhere from 100 to 250 people, while working for the Five Families of New York’s Mafia. The Iceman, a film based on Kuklisnki’s double life, was released in 2012.

Richard Kuklinski

Dean Malenko

Also dubbed ‘The Man of 1,000 Holds,’ Malenko would often approach the ring with absolutely no emotion on his face and this continued throughout the duration of his matches. Unfortunately, when the strong technical wrestler arrived in the character driven WWE after stints in other promotions, he was saddled with the persona of a James Bond-esque ladies’ man, which just didn’t fit.

Adam Vinatieri

While there are some who devalue the role of a football placekicker, when compared to the rest of his teammates, Adam Vinatieri has earned the respect of fans, media, and his colleagues, thanks to completing some of the most essential field goals in the history of the sport. His resume includes two game-winning Super Bowl kicks, among his record four championships for a kicker.

Wim Hof

Of all the people listed in this article with the nickname Iceman, Hof is the only that can claim to actually have a close relationship with the cold stuff. Hof was once the world record holder for the longest ice bath at one hour and 44 minutes. He also excels at other cold weather challenges, including climbing the world’s most fearsome mountains in only shorts and completing marathons in polar temperatures, also scarcely clad.

George Woolf

How about a little Canadian content to wrap up? Woolf was one of the jockeys who rode the legendary Seabiscuit. His strategy of waiting for just the right moment to make his move in a race is what earned him the nickname Iceman. Sadly, Woolf died following a racing accident, in which he fell from his horse and suffered a head injury. An award for jockeys was named after Woolf and awarded annually since 1950.

Flavour Revolution: Crisp Twilight

Crisp Twilight Cocktail

  • Muddle Sage Leaves
  • 1.5 oz Effen Cucumber Vodka
  • Top with Grapefruit Soda
  • Dash of Simple Syrup
  • Dash of Angostura Bitters
  • Garnish with a Cucumber Slice

Cucumbers are so awesome that they can even be used to cure hangovers… not that the Sip Advisor is ever afflicted by this dreaded condition. Thanks to their mix of vitamins, sugar, water, and other nutrients, a few slices of cucumber can be the difference between waking up normally, or wasting the day away in bed!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3 Sips out of 5):
This drink was okay, but given the combo of Angostura Bitters and Grapefruit Soda, the Simple Syrup and even Cucumber Vodka could only do so much to balance out the cocktail, with a kick of sweetness. The Sage Leaves didn’t do much at all for the drink, hidden behind other flavours.

January 17 – Attorney Privilege

Order in the Court

With Mrs. Sip’s birthday right around the corner, I thought I’d salute her profession and take a look at the greatest fictional lawyers. I have to preface this piece by saying that I did not include serious legal dramas, such as Law & Order (and all its subsidiaries), The Practice, Boston Legal, etc. So, without further ado, here are the litigators I’d choose to have watching my interests!

#5: Barry Zuckercorn – Arrested Development

Barry Zuckercorn has looked after the legal interests of the Bluth family for decades, but is out of his league when George Sr. is arrested and charged with investment fraud and even treason against the country. After years of negligent representation, Zuckercorn is finally replaced by the smooth, fast-talking Bob Loblaw, although is hired back when Loblaw deserts the Bluth’s. Still, you gotta love a lawyer whose ads ask: “Why should you go to jail for a crime someone else noticed?”

Zuckercorn

#4: Dan Fielding & Christine Sullivan – Night Court

One of the things that made Night Court so amazing was the banter back and forth between district attorney Dan Fielding and public defender Christine Sullivan – throw in judge Harold T. Stone and you have the makings of some fine legal repartee. Ironically, it was the sleazy, womanizing Fielding who was actually the prosecutor, while truthful and naïve Sullivan was the public defender. And who couldn’t love that wicked theme song blasted at the start of each episode!

#3: Lionel Hutz – The Simpsons

Lionel Hutz is an ambulance chasing, injury-faking, schyster, who makes every joke about lawyers seem accurate and all contempt hurled towards that profession justifiable. Hutz represented the Simpson family in a variety of suits, including Bart being hit by Mr. Burns vehicle, Bart ingesting a jagged metal Krusty-O cereal toy, and Homer being barred from a seafood buffet. This character could have had so many more great moments had its voice actor Phil Hartman not been tragically killed.

Lionel Hutz

#2: Vincent Gambini – My Cousin Vinny

The gruff, inexperienced lawyer – who seemed to be out of his element in the courtroom – eventually earned the respect of the entire court, including the judge who jailed him for contempt. Vinny’s different style of practicing law saves his wrongly accused cousin from a murder charge and possible death penalty. A sequel to the film never took place, despite a script being written. Marisa Tomei, despite winning an Oscar for her role as Vinny’s girlfriend, was not interested in reprising the character.

#1: Saul Goodman – Breaking Bad

When you represent (among other seedy clients) a pair of meth cooks, you’re bound to get a little dirty yourself… and that’s just the way Saul likes it. Heck, Saul Goodman isn’t even the guy’s real name. If you break it down, he’s really saying “It’s all good, man!” Saul is willing to go to all lengths for his clients, so long as the compensation is there. Saul will be getting his own show soon, aired exclusively on Netflix. So, if you ever find yourself in trouble, you “Better Call Saul!”

Super Saturday Shot Day: Attorney Privilege

Attorney Privilege Shot

  • 1 oz Bourbon
  • 0.5 oz Orgeat Syrup
  • Dash of Angostura Bitters
  • Garnish with a Lemon Twist

Wow, was this ever a hard list to narrow down… I would also hire Fletcher Reede (Liar Liar), at least before he went all soft; Harvey Birdman (Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law), because the Sip Advisor is really a rejected Hanna-Barbera animated character; and Ben Matlock and Perry Mason, simply because they’re badass lawyers who rarely lose a case, despite having the odds stacked against them!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
I decided to go with this shooter, over another recipe, because Mrs. Sip is a fan of Orgeat Syrup and this drink is dedicated to her, after all! It was pretty good and what I would call a Man’s Man shot, what with the classic Bourbon and Angostura Bitters combo. This would make for a Mad Man-esque cocktail, if the proportions were upped.

Chile – Pisco Sour

Island Hopping

As we make our way to the country of Chile (not the food, although that sounds pretty good too and would go well with today’s drink) the Sip Advisor makes a point of learning something new every day… and today’s fresh factoid is a doozy: Did you know that Easter Island, located among the Polynesian islands and home to the Moai statues, is actually Chilean land? The more you know *rainbow star swipe*! Let’s take a closer look at this mysterious island:

The entire island, also known as Rapa Nui, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as it offers a spectacular chance for researchers to learn about some of the world’s earliest civilizations. The Moai statues, for which the Easter Island is best known, were constructed between 1100-1680 CE. 887 of the figures have been catalogued and it’s estimated that each statue took one year to complete and was carved by a team, using volcanic ash from the extinct Rano Raraku volcano. Each sculpture represented the deceased head of a family.

stonehenge-easter-island

The Moai civilization believed that the dead provided everything their people needed, including health, successful crops, good fortune, etc. Most Moai settlements were located along the coast and that is why the statues are found there, facing inwards to look over the people and with their back to the spirit world of the sea.

The Birdmen Cult, whose leader could be anyone from wrestler Koko B. Ware to basketball star Chris Andersen (both enjoyed careers with the nickname Birdman), also once inhabited the island, following the Moai era. Also known as Tangatu Manu, they form a large part of the Rapa Nui mythology and their decorations can still be found at churches on Easter Island.

Easter Island covers only 63 square miles and is one of the world’s most isolated locations, inhabited by a population of only 4,781, as of 2009. Back in the day, constant clashes between tribes occurred on the small space and with limited resources and disease, it wasn’t long before the island fell to pieces. Chile gained control of Easter Island in 1888 and used it as an expansive sheep farm, protected by the Chilean Navy, until opening it to the public in 1966. At that time, the leftover Rapa Nui citizens were made people of Chile.

Easter-Island

As a massive fan of water, the Sip Advisor finds it incredibly disappointing that Easter Island lacks any freshwater source. That said, it is a freakin’ island, which receives a fair amount of rain. For this Vancouverite, it would certainly feel like home. Tourists can stay on Easter Island, but like other remote locations, goods and services can be much more expensive than in other parts of the world. The area is accessible by the Mataveri International Airport.

You might be asking: What else is there to do on Easter Island, other than view the statues. Well, part of the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series is held there, giving the Sip Advisor and fellow thrill-seekers a chance to join the Moai with smushed-in faces. Fishing is also a popular activity, as is watching the beautiful Polynesian women dance in revealing outfits!

In recent years, Easter Island has been cited as an example of what can happen when natural resources are mass consumed, which caused its basic extinction at one point in history. The island has been used as a metaphor by some scientists to show what could happen if the earth’s population doesn’t change its ways, although there are also opponents to this example.

Chile: Pisco Sour

Pisco Sour Cocktail

  • 2 oz Pisco
  • Top with Lemon Juice
  • Dash of Simple Syrup
  • Splash of Egg Whites
  • Dash of Angostura Bitters
  • Garnish with a Lemon Wedge

If I know Mrs. Sip as well as I think I do, then you can bet we will one day travel to this unique destination. Hopefully they serve drinks in Moai statue-themed glasses and they’re not one of those anti-alcohol locales!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This is one of Mrs. Sip’s favourite cocktails, although she enjoyed them in Peru, instead of Chile. It was a first try for me, as I kept saving the cocktail for when this project rolled around. I enjoyed it, but I wonder what the drink would taste like with Lemonade subbed in for the Lemon Juice? I’ll have to give that a try at some point. For those who haven’t yet tried Pisco, it reminds me of Tequila, but it perhaps a little sweeter.

Croatia – Belle of the Ball

Mad Scientist

While most have heard of Thomas Edison, the same can’t be said for his rival Nikola Tesla. Tesla was born in what is now Croatia in 1856 and the genius inventor created and theorized significantly over his life, but fell into obscurity after dying. Only in recent years, have his achievements gained more recognition with many coming to the conclusion that his alternate current (AC) electricity was in fact better and safer than Edison’s direct current (DC) electricity. So, let’s tune up some AC/DC and learn about the unsung hero:

Tesla once worked for Edison, designing and improving electrical equipment. As he relocated from France to the United States, he was aboard a ship that faced a mutiny and was nearly tossed overboard. Some of his money, luggage, and even his ticket aboard the vessel were stolen. When he arrived in New York City, he had four cents to his name. He must have hid those pennies real well!

Tesla Electrifying

The beginning of the two men’s rivalry may have occurred when Tesla began redesigning Edison’s motors and generators with the promise of a $50,000 reward. When improvements were made, Edison said he was merely joking, although he did offer a weekly pay raise to Tesla, who quit the job immediately.

The War of Currents between Edison and George Westinghouse (who employed Tesla as a consultant and used his alternate current patents and inventions) drove both men to the brink of bankruptcy. The AC current won the war, despite Edison’s smear campaign against Tesla and Westinghouse, using AC to electrocute animals in an attempt to show it as more dangerous and even inadvertently creating the electric chair method of capital punishment. Suck it, Edison!

Legends persist that Tesla and Edison were to be co-winners of the 1915 Nobel Prize in Physics, but one or both of them refused the honour thanks to their bitter hatred of each other. Some even say that Edison, who had grown wealthy thanks to his inventions, balked at the reward just to make sure Tesla didn’t receive any prize money.

Tesla's Bitch

Because of his Eastern European ethnicity and some of his concepts and inventions, Tesla gained a reputation as a mad scientist and a number of conspiracy theories center on the inventor, such as UFO and occult related notions. Some of Tesla’s papers are still classified by the U.S. government and when asked for through Freedom of Information requests, are heavily censored.

A hero of super villains everywhere, Tesla claimed to have invented a death ray, dubbed ‘Teleforce.’ Known as a “directed-energy weapon” or even a “peace ray,” Tesla insisted he had built and tested the device. When he grew suspicious of spies and other officials trying to steal the plans from him, he revealed that the entire blueprint was in his mind and had never been drawn out on paper.

Despite all the rumours, Tesla had over 700 patents to his name and can be credited with work in robotics, radar, wireless communication, lighting, and so much more. Tesla was also a showman and often invited the press to his birthday party, where he would unveil new creations and discuss his various theories. Among his greatest inventions was the Tesla Coil, which allowed the transmission of electrical energy without wires.

Tesla Coils

As it is with most brilliant people, Tesla had some quirks. He claimed to only need two hours sleep each night (although he napped, as well) and had some issues with obsessive compulsive disorder, including the cleaning of cutlery and a fascination with the number three, going so far as to wash his hands three times in a row and walk around a building thrice before entering.

Sounding like Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory, Tesla denounced marriage and sex, stating “I do not think you can name many great inventions that have been made by married men.” At least he didn’t use Sheldon’s term of coitus when he believed that getting down with his bad self would take away from his scientific achievements. Hey, the guy did create remote control, radio, and even lasers, so perhaps he was onto something.

One thing I can certainly fault Tesla for (I mean, aside from his anti-sex agenda) was his affection for pigeons. I’ve written numerous times about my disdain for the winged rats, but Tesla would go so far as to rescue injured pigeons and bring them home. He even fell in love with one, writing “I loved that pigeon as a man loves a woman, and she loved me. As long as I had her, there was a purpose to my life.” Now, that, my little sippers, is a prime example of eccentricity!

Tesla Kitten

Tesla passed away in 1943, with little to no fortune, unlike his contemporaries, Edison and Westinghouse. After dying, Tesla was cremated with his ashes being placed in a golden sphere urn, as the sphere was his favourite shape (despite reportedly hating round jewelry like pearls and even going so far as to not speak to women who wore them). The urn is on display at the Nikola Tesla museum in Belgrade, Serbia.

Posthumous honours for the scientist include the unit of measure for magnetic field strength being known as a “tesla” and an electric car company, Tesla Motors, being named in memory of the inventor. Best of all, he now has a Sip Advisor article dedicated to his work!

Croatia: Belle of the Ball

Belle of the Ball Cocktail

  • 0.75 oz Irish Crème
  • 0.5 oz Rakija
  • 0.25 oz Campari
  • 0.25 oz Jagermeister
  • Dash of Angostura Bitters
  • Garnish with Orange Slice

I’ve become interested in Tesla in recent years and it seems I’m not alone, as others become recognizant of the fact that his contributions to the world went largely uncelebrated compared to some of his partners and adversaries. This drink is made in his honour!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (2.5 Sips out of 5):
This cocktail is pretty good… until that damn Campari bitter aftertaste kicks in and dominates the whole experience. The Rakija is pretty strong too, but not in a necessarily bad way. The cocktail measurements don’t provide a big drink, so it’s not like you’re dedicating a lot of time to it. Give it a shot if you’re curious, but it might be one recipe to avoid.