Friday, January 20, 2012

The One That Got Away - Elusive New Cocktail

Have you ever tried to catch a rabbit? Darned hard, I'll say. They're not only extremely fast, but they move unpredictably from one direction to another, which makes them doubly elusive. That's a survival technique, honed into them over hundreds of thousands of years of running from predators.

Their other strategy, of course, is to rapidly reproduce. It's the old joke, rabbits copulating and filling up their ecological niche with despatch. Cute little buggers, and vegetarians too. But they can quickly get out of hand. And, as Mr. McGregor knew, a danger to your garden. Peter liked that lettuce and those juicy carrots!

The one that got away is every person's dream of the perfect match. When two people meet in the course of life, they may have a momentary recognition of possibility, but be distracted or pulled apart by forces that seem inevitable. Later, years later, they may shake their heads ruefully, imagining what might have been. Who you stay, or hook up, with goes a long way towards determining the kind of life you will have. Some people marry several times, or go through a series of dead-end, wrong-turn, relationships. I've been married for over 40 years, and have no regrets. But I've never caught a rabbit, or even a greased pig. Some things remain stubbornly elusive.

Here's a cocktail with a lovely elusive flavor--elusive because if you didn't know what was in it, you would never guess the ingredients. Which is a fun game--trying to guess what may be in a drink, if you don't know beforehand. Those taste-buds can be very unreliable reporters of flavor. Flavor, as I've remarked before here, is a very subtle sense. We know the usual individual segments--salt, sweet, bitter, sourness--with the addition, perhaps, of savoriness and piquancy. But enough of theory. Try this one on yourself, and then on a friend. But don't tell them what's in it. Make them guess. It's tantalizingly seductive.

The mixture, as always, by proportion--

4 parts Boodles gin
2 parts cocktail grapefruit
1 part maraschino liqueur
1 part créme de bananae

Shaken gently and served up in a chilled cocktail glass.

That tantalus!

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