4/11/2016 – Hard Spirits and Classic Cocktails (w/ Robert Haynes-Peterson)


Welcome to Five Course Trivia! Five days a week, we’ll post five questions about something from the culinary world, from soup to nuts and all dishes in between.

This week is Guest Week here at FCT, and I’m inviting friends and supporters of the site to craft some of their own questions! To start the week, we have questions from Robert Haynes-Peterson, a writer in New York City. Everything after this point was written by him. Enjoy!

The past decade has witnessed a renewed interest in high-quality cocktails either from the 19th century or made in a style which reflects that era’s dedication to well-made booze and fresh ingredients. We raise a toast to an oft-touched on, but as yet focused-on category in LearnedLeague.

Learned League Precedent: Described by Comedian John Hodgman as tasting “like pencil shavings and heartbreak” and noted on its label as requiring “two hands” and that “only 1 in every 49 men will drink it,” give the name of this wormwood-based liqueur that is covered up by the blue rectangle. (Hint it appeared in a Chicago One-Day)

LL Question
LL precedent

1. While Charles Dickens was on his second tour of America, he praised a drink his NYC landlord made which took advantage of fresh precipitation and supposedly helped cure a common winter malady. It consisted, as he said, of “all the spirits ever heard of in the world, with bitters, lemon, sugar and snow” Pro tip: Avoid the yellow kind.  (image – not of the actual cocktail – borrowed from shawnacoronado.com, an awesome wellness blog)

Question 1 ShawnaCoronadocom
Question 1

2. Which way is the fellow facing on this redacted label and what’s he doing? He’s redacted behind the red rectangles.

Question 2 Redacted
Question 2

3. These days, coming up with a whole new kind of spirt category is a challenge. But filmmaker Stephen Soderberg discovered this Bolivian spirit—made from the white muscat of alexandria grape while filming “Che”—and recently began marketing and importing it under what name (a variation of what the locals call it)?

Question 3 redacted
Question 3

4. In the “Thin Man,” detective Nick Charles teaches a team of bartenders how to properly mix a variety of drinks to different dance steps; The dry martini to a waltz, the Manhattan to a foxtrot, and what outer borough Martini riff to a two-step (photo: Stuart Webster, Wikicommons)?

Question 4 Wikicommons
Question 4

5. Not all mixed drinks are cocktails (the official definition of which is something along the lines of a drink featuring one or more spirit, sweetener, bitters and water, often in the form of ice). What class of drinks does the gin drink reputedly created by New Orelans bartender Henry Ramos in the 1880s, and featuring egg white and cream fall into (image borrowed from bonappetit.com)?

Question 5 Bonappetitdotcom
Question 5

Thanks again to Robert for crafting today’s questions! Stay tuned for tomorrow’s Guest Week author, with questions by Peter Broda!


LL. Malort
1. Rocky Mountain Sneezer
2. Right and walking (Johnnie Walker Golden Label)
3. Singani 63
4. Bronx Cocktail
5. Fizz (Ramos Gin Fizz)

3 thoughts on “4/11/2016 – Hard Spirits and Classic Cocktails (w/ Robert Haynes-Peterson)

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