Our chapter of the League of Gentlemen Adventurers is lucky enough to have a fine ethanol-mixologist in Dr. Lee A. Dunteman, so we never lack for quality refreshments. If you don’t happen to have a master of the imbibulatory arts as friend & travel companion, we highly recommend the new website, DrinkSkool.com.
Drink Skool is owned & operated by men whose names will likely be familiar to anyone who takes their drinking seriously: Dale DeGroff, David Wondrich, Doug Frost, Andy Seymour, F. Paul Pacult, and Steven Olson. These gents have been redefining the way America drinks for quite some time now, and for the better. On their site, you can learn everything you might need to know about the Gentlemanly Art of mixing cocktails, from lessons on ingredients, to videos on shaking and stirring techniques, to an essential skill that many bartenders’ guides neglect–knowledge of booze-related trivia.
Drink Skool certainly gets the LGA Seal of Approval.
I’m happy to report that our campaign asking Woodford Reserve Bourbon to publicly disavow an affront to mixology made in their name has reached the ears of those at the company itself.
I received the following correspondence from the good people at Woodford, who are, apparently, as appalled as the rest of us at the maltreatment of their delicious spirits and maligning of the good name of the Mint Julep.
Any Gentleman or Gentlelady Adventurer viewing it would naturally feel an increasing sense of horror as each step in creating the “Mint Julep” is described by this attractive, well-meaning, though woefully misinformed young woman.
Fortuantely one horrified Gent has taken matters into his own hands to correct the misinformation. This from Jeffrey Morgenthaler:
For bravely setting the record straight on this subject, the LGA has voted to grant Mr. Morgenthaler our prestigious L. Farley Falernum Memorial Award for Mixological Integrity.
And, in order to atone for their sins in this matter, we would also like to publicly call on Woodford Reserve to send Mr. Morgenthaler a case of their finest bourbon to be used as he sees fit, and – why not? – to send one to the League as well for having the idea. We encourage all LGA members and sympathizers to boycott their product until they acquiesce to our demands.
Congratulations, Mr. Morgenthaler, and keep up the good work.
Gin. Dry Vermouth. Shaken (or stirred) with ice, then strained into a stylish though somewhat impractical glass, with either an olive or a twist of lemon peel dropped in at the end.
With such a brief recipe, could the quality of the Martini Cocktail actually vary that much from establishment to establishment? The answer is, of course, “GOD yes!” And the martini served at Los Angeles’s venerable Musso and Frank is the finest I have ever had.
We were celebrating my recent graduation from the USC School of Cinematic Arts, whose founding faculty included Douglas Fairbanks and D.W. Griffith. While I was studying there, I also received a bit of financial help from the Mary Pickford Foundation. Pickford, Griffith, and Fairbanks, along with Charlie Chaplin, founded United Artists 1919, and they were all regulars at Musso and Frank, which opened that same year. Chaplin’s favorite dish was the grilled lamb kidneys, and an “oft-repeated, but unverified story“1 has Douglas Fairbanks racing Rudolph Valentino down Hollywood Boulevard on horseback to get to the famous bar and grill.
Whatever our respective political stripes, I believe Gentlemen and Gentlelady Adventurers the world over can agree that the Cocktail is among America’s greatest gifts to the world. And also that a Martini does not contain vodka…