On a Lordly Libation

Cara/Andrea here,

DukeIf you’re like me, you’re still a wee bit groggy from all the holiday indulgences in rich food and potent libations. Thus my New Year’s resolutions included vows of a Spartan diet, with the only bubbly allowed being sparkling mineral water. But let’s face it, life can be a little dull without butter, cream, chocolate . . . and a sip of spirits to celebrate our special little moments.

Now, speaking of drinks, some of you may remember that a few months ago, I promised to reveal the secret of the world’s best martini. Let me preface this by saying I am by no means a connoisseur of fine spirits—wine is my usual choice. But when I was staying at Duke’s Hotel in London, I was told that its bar was famous for its martini. So how could I resist! (It was, after all, a research trip!)

DukesBar For anyone who loves history, walking into Duke’s Bar is in itself a seduction of the senses. The two sitting rooms are intimate in scale, with plush carpeting, creamy wood trim and muted lighting that creates the feeling that you’re steeping into the private parlor of a friend—a very posh friend. One with oodles of taste and oodles of Old Money. Painting and prints of historic dukes adorn the pale taupe walls, their regal visages presiding over the well-heeled crowd. Wellington. Devonshire. York . . .

Alessandro1 And then there’s Alessandro. The Duke of the Drinks trolley, he is resplendent in his elegant white dinner jacket and dapper black tie. His voice is low and liquid, and somehow I feel impossibly chic as I take a seat in one of the soft leather chairs, imagining myself swathed in silk, satin and pearls. When he hears that I know precious little about his specialty of the house, he smiles and offers to educate me.

But first, a bit of history on gin, which according to Alessandro is the preferred spirit for a true martini. (He gives a long suffering sigh at the mention of vodka—though Ian Fleming was a regular at Duke’s, Alessandro claims he enjoyed “shaking things up” and so made James Bond a bit of a rebel with his vodka martini.)

Gin, which derives from the Dutch word genever, is a grain-based spirit infused with juniper, and is said to have originated in Holland sometime during the early 17th century. (Though some claim it was prevalent in Renaissance Italy.) During the Thirty Years’ War, English soldiers picked up the habit of indulging in a little “Dutch Courage” before battle, and when they returned home, they brought with them a taste for gin.

HogarthGinLane William of Orange, who came to the English throne in 1689 after the “Glorious Revolution,” encouraged its consumption, as he wished to discourage the import of brandy and other spirits from Catholic countries such as France. The drink became popular—a little too popular. By the 1730s, drunkenness among the poor was a huge problem, as depicted by Hogarth is his print “Gin Lane.” Of the 15,000 drinking establishments in London, over half were said to be gin shops. (Gin, which requires no aging, is a relatively cheap liquor to produce.) Some pubs had a plaque shaped like a cat on its outside walls. Known as ‘Old Tom,’ this contraption served as a precursor of the modern vending machine—a person would insert a penny into the cat’s mouth and place his mouth around a tube between the paws. In return, the barkeeper would pour a shot of gin through the tube.  ‘Old Tom’ gin is a style that still exists today, and like many 19th century gins, is sweeter than other modern blends.

The government passed a Gin Act in 1739, which failed to control the trade and ended up being repealed in 1742. To circumvent taxes, many makers called their spirits “medicinal” draughts and marketed them with such names as Cuckold’s Comfort and My Lady’s Eye Water. In the 1750s, the government did manage to regulate the production and distribution somewhat, but gin remained a drink of the lower classes. However, with the advent of new distilling techniques in the mid 1800s, gin became a lighter, more refined spirit—known as ‘London Dry’—and became popular with the ladies in Victorian times.

Martini-poster  As the British Empire spread around the globe, gin went with it. It became a favorite drink in places like India, where it was mixed with quinine “tonic’ water—an anti-malarial botanical—to mask its bitter taste. In America, gin’s low cost and ease of production made it a staple of the Prohibition era. Along with whiskey and rye, it’s cleaned up its image considerably since then and today, of course, it’s a basic ingredient in countless cocktails.

‘London Dry’ is the most common style of gin. There is also ‘Plymouth’ gin, which is a full-bodied blend flavored with citrus peel, orris and angelica root, cardamom and coriander, as well as juniper. (Only one distillery, Coates & Company, is allowed to call itself ‘Plymouth’ gin.)

Now back to Alessandro. He decided to make me a ‘classic” martini, for which he chose Plymouth gin. Rolling over his vintage wood and brass drink cart, he uncapped a bottle fresh from the freezer—that’s part of his secret for making the perfect martini. A spritz from an atomizer is all the vermouth he adds to the glass—which is also frozen. (Churchill, who took his drinks seriously, is said to have remarked that merely waving a vermouth cork over the gin was enough.) 

BogartHe proceeded to cut a long strip of lemon peel—a bit over two inches—which he carefully pinched, skin side to skin side, over the drink to release the oils over the surface. Then he rubbed the peel along the rim, and gently placed it in the gin. As the glass warms, he told me, the essence of the lemon oil would slowly infuse the drink. “It’s really quite simple,” he remarked.

Simple but sublime. I may never become a regular martini drinker, but I smile knowing that I’ve tasted the best in the world. Thank you, Alessandro.

How about you? Do you have a favorite drink? And have you ever had a special bar experience that made you feel like a swanky film star?

110 thoughts on “On a Lordly Libation”

  1. Oh, I remember you mentioned that when I blogged about champagne. I am NOT a big drinker. Truly! (LOL) But I do enjoy a good glass of wine, and am fascinated by the history and lore surrounding wines and spirits. As for Dukes’s Bar, it’s very “un-barlike” with wonderful prints, and quiet conversation. You would feel very comfortable soaking up the ambience while enjoying a sparking water, or any non-alcoholic drink of you choosing.

    Reply
  2. Oh, I remember you mentioned that when I blogged about champagne. I am NOT a big drinker. Truly! (LOL) But I do enjoy a good glass of wine, and am fascinated by the history and lore surrounding wines and spirits. As for Dukes’s Bar, it’s very “un-barlike” with wonderful prints, and quiet conversation. You would feel very comfortable soaking up the ambience while enjoying a sparking water, or any non-alcoholic drink of you choosing.

    Reply
  3. Oh, I remember you mentioned that when I blogged about champagne. I am NOT a big drinker. Truly! (LOL) But I do enjoy a good glass of wine, and am fascinated by the history and lore surrounding wines and spirits. As for Dukes’s Bar, it’s very “un-barlike” with wonderful prints, and quiet conversation. You would feel very comfortable soaking up the ambience while enjoying a sparking water, or any non-alcoholic drink of you choosing.

    Reply
  4. Oh, I remember you mentioned that when I blogged about champagne. I am NOT a big drinker. Truly! (LOL) But I do enjoy a good glass of wine, and am fascinated by the history and lore surrounding wines and spirits. As for Dukes’s Bar, it’s very “un-barlike” with wonderful prints, and quiet conversation. You would feel very comfortable soaking up the ambience while enjoying a sparking water, or any non-alcoholic drink of you choosing.

    Reply
  5. Oh, I remember you mentioned that when I blogged about champagne. I am NOT a big drinker. Truly! (LOL) But I do enjoy a good glass of wine, and am fascinated by the history and lore surrounding wines and spirits. As for Dukes’s Bar, it’s very “un-barlike” with wonderful prints, and quiet conversation. You would feel very comfortable soaking up the ambience while enjoying a sparking water, or any non-alcoholic drink of you choosing.

    Reply
  6. What fun! Twice in my life I’ve had martinis, and each time it almost put me into a coma, so spirits are not my drink. But the history sure is interesting. And the Dukes Bar sounds quite lovely!
    Mary Jo, who will stick to wine

    Reply
  7. What fun! Twice in my life I’ve had martinis, and each time it almost put me into a coma, so spirits are not my drink. But the history sure is interesting. And the Dukes Bar sounds quite lovely!
    Mary Jo, who will stick to wine

    Reply
  8. What fun! Twice in my life I’ve had martinis, and each time it almost put me into a coma, so spirits are not my drink. But the history sure is interesting. And the Dukes Bar sounds quite lovely!
    Mary Jo, who will stick to wine

    Reply
  9. What fun! Twice in my life I’ve had martinis, and each time it almost put me into a coma, so spirits are not my drink. But the history sure is interesting. And the Dukes Bar sounds quite lovely!
    Mary Jo, who will stick to wine

    Reply
  10. What fun! Twice in my life I’ve had martinis, and each time it almost put me into a coma, so spirits are not my drink. But the history sure is interesting. And the Dukes Bar sounds quite lovely!
    Mary Jo, who will stick to wine

    Reply
  11. Oh, LOL, Mary Jo. As I sipped my martini (the first in my life) I nearly keeled over from the fumes alone . . . though the couple next to me—with whom I had a lovely chat on London and history—proceeded to order two of them, and then a third. Alessandro would not allow the lady to have it. He insisted she have a champagne cocktail instead, and told her she would thank him in the morning!
    I’m also much happier with wine.

    Reply
  12. Oh, LOL, Mary Jo. As I sipped my martini (the first in my life) I nearly keeled over from the fumes alone . . . though the couple next to me—with whom I had a lovely chat on London and history—proceeded to order two of them, and then a third. Alessandro would not allow the lady to have it. He insisted she have a champagne cocktail instead, and told her she would thank him in the morning!
    I’m also much happier with wine.

    Reply
  13. Oh, LOL, Mary Jo. As I sipped my martini (the first in my life) I nearly keeled over from the fumes alone . . . though the couple next to me—with whom I had a lovely chat on London and history—proceeded to order two of them, and then a third. Alessandro would not allow the lady to have it. He insisted she have a champagne cocktail instead, and told her she would thank him in the morning!
    I’m also much happier with wine.

    Reply
  14. Oh, LOL, Mary Jo. As I sipped my martini (the first in my life) I nearly keeled over from the fumes alone . . . though the couple next to me—with whom I had a lovely chat on London and history—proceeded to order two of them, and then a third. Alessandro would not allow the lady to have it. He insisted she have a champagne cocktail instead, and told her she would thank him in the morning!
    I’m also much happier with wine.

    Reply
  15. Oh, LOL, Mary Jo. As I sipped my martini (the first in my life) I nearly keeled over from the fumes alone . . . though the couple next to me—with whom I had a lovely chat on London and history—proceeded to order two of them, and then a third. Alessandro would not allow the lady to have it. He insisted she have a champagne cocktail instead, and told her she would thank him in the morning!
    I’m also much happier with wine.

    Reply
  16. Cara/Andrea, interesting post. I never realized there was a sweet gin. I do remember that the problem of gin swilling was so widespread the poor fed gin to babies — it was cheaper than milk and it “helped them to sleep: — ie knocked the poor little creatures out.
    I must confess I do like a martini. It was one of the first cocktails I liked, after trying and disliking the sweet, creamy drinks. I even remember where and when and with whom I drank my first martini. I thought it was rocket fuel, though tasty. LOL By my second, I was hooked.
    I’ve never had one with lemon peel — for me, the olive is a crucial part of what I like, which I think is the salt. It also explains my liking for margaritas, to which I was introduced by a fellow romance writer. I don’t often have cocktails, so for me, they’re a treat you have in the company of friends.

    Reply
  17. Cara/Andrea, interesting post. I never realized there was a sweet gin. I do remember that the problem of gin swilling was so widespread the poor fed gin to babies — it was cheaper than milk and it “helped them to sleep: — ie knocked the poor little creatures out.
    I must confess I do like a martini. It was one of the first cocktails I liked, after trying and disliking the sweet, creamy drinks. I even remember where and when and with whom I drank my first martini. I thought it was rocket fuel, though tasty. LOL By my second, I was hooked.
    I’ve never had one with lemon peel — for me, the olive is a crucial part of what I like, which I think is the salt. It also explains my liking for margaritas, to which I was introduced by a fellow romance writer. I don’t often have cocktails, so for me, they’re a treat you have in the company of friends.

    Reply
  18. Cara/Andrea, interesting post. I never realized there was a sweet gin. I do remember that the problem of gin swilling was so widespread the poor fed gin to babies — it was cheaper than milk and it “helped them to sleep: — ie knocked the poor little creatures out.
    I must confess I do like a martini. It was one of the first cocktails I liked, after trying and disliking the sweet, creamy drinks. I even remember where and when and with whom I drank my first martini. I thought it was rocket fuel, though tasty. LOL By my second, I was hooked.
    I’ve never had one with lemon peel — for me, the olive is a crucial part of what I like, which I think is the salt. It also explains my liking for margaritas, to which I was introduced by a fellow romance writer. I don’t often have cocktails, so for me, they’re a treat you have in the company of friends.

    Reply
  19. Cara/Andrea, interesting post. I never realized there was a sweet gin. I do remember that the problem of gin swilling was so widespread the poor fed gin to babies — it was cheaper than milk and it “helped them to sleep: — ie knocked the poor little creatures out.
    I must confess I do like a martini. It was one of the first cocktails I liked, after trying and disliking the sweet, creamy drinks. I even remember where and when and with whom I drank my first martini. I thought it was rocket fuel, though tasty. LOL By my second, I was hooked.
    I’ve never had one with lemon peel — for me, the olive is a crucial part of what I like, which I think is the salt. It also explains my liking for margaritas, to which I was introduced by a fellow romance writer. I don’t often have cocktails, so for me, they’re a treat you have in the company of friends.

    Reply
  20. Cara/Andrea, interesting post. I never realized there was a sweet gin. I do remember that the problem of gin swilling was so widespread the poor fed gin to babies — it was cheaper than milk and it “helped them to sleep: — ie knocked the poor little creatures out.
    I must confess I do like a martini. It was one of the first cocktails I liked, after trying and disliking the sweet, creamy drinks. I even remember where and when and with whom I drank my first martini. I thought it was rocket fuel, though tasty. LOL By my second, I was hooked.
    I’ve never had one with lemon peel — for me, the olive is a crucial part of what I like, which I think is the salt. It also explains my liking for margaritas, to which I was introduced by a fellow romance writer. I don’t often have cocktails, so for me, they’re a treat you have in the company of friends.

    Reply
  21. A drink really does match a place. My husband and I had to have a brandy at the Ritz in Paris ala Hemingway. As for rich desserts though, my daughter turned 17 and since she can’t drink we celebrated with dessert. She wanted a flourless tort. 8 eggs, a pound of chocolate and 1/2 pound of butter really makes a great treat. Again she is 17 and has the metabolism of youth. OK. What do we trade, fabulous bars or fabulous waistlines?
    Always tormented,
    Lyn S

    Reply
  22. A drink really does match a place. My husband and I had to have a brandy at the Ritz in Paris ala Hemingway. As for rich desserts though, my daughter turned 17 and since she can’t drink we celebrated with dessert. She wanted a flourless tort. 8 eggs, a pound of chocolate and 1/2 pound of butter really makes a great treat. Again she is 17 and has the metabolism of youth. OK. What do we trade, fabulous bars or fabulous waistlines?
    Always tormented,
    Lyn S

    Reply
  23. A drink really does match a place. My husband and I had to have a brandy at the Ritz in Paris ala Hemingway. As for rich desserts though, my daughter turned 17 and since she can’t drink we celebrated with dessert. She wanted a flourless tort. 8 eggs, a pound of chocolate and 1/2 pound of butter really makes a great treat. Again she is 17 and has the metabolism of youth. OK. What do we trade, fabulous bars or fabulous waistlines?
    Always tormented,
    Lyn S

    Reply
  24. A drink really does match a place. My husband and I had to have a brandy at the Ritz in Paris ala Hemingway. As for rich desserts though, my daughter turned 17 and since she can’t drink we celebrated with dessert. She wanted a flourless tort. 8 eggs, a pound of chocolate and 1/2 pound of butter really makes a great treat. Again she is 17 and has the metabolism of youth. OK. What do we trade, fabulous bars or fabulous waistlines?
    Always tormented,
    Lyn S

    Reply
  25. A drink really does match a place. My husband and I had to have a brandy at the Ritz in Paris ala Hemingway. As for rich desserts though, my daughter turned 17 and since she can’t drink we celebrated with dessert. She wanted a flourless tort. 8 eggs, a pound of chocolate and 1/2 pound of butter really makes a great treat. Again she is 17 and has the metabolism of youth. OK. What do we trade, fabulous bars or fabulous waistlines?
    Always tormented,
    Lyn S

    Reply
  26. Anne, Alessandro approves of olives in martinis. He liked matching the lemon with the Plymouth gin, which has citrus botanicals. (Though I must confess the nuances were probably wasted on my palate.) I did enjoy the martini. Though it won’t become a habit.

    Reply
  27. Anne, Alessandro approves of olives in martinis. He liked matching the lemon with the Plymouth gin, which has citrus botanicals. (Though I must confess the nuances were probably wasted on my palate.) I did enjoy the martini. Though it won’t become a habit.

    Reply
  28. Anne, Alessandro approves of olives in martinis. He liked matching the lemon with the Plymouth gin, which has citrus botanicals. (Though I must confess the nuances were probably wasted on my palate.) I did enjoy the martini. Though it won’t become a habit.

    Reply
  29. Anne, Alessandro approves of olives in martinis. He liked matching the lemon with the Plymouth gin, which has citrus botanicals. (Though I must confess the nuances were probably wasted on my palate.) I did enjoy the martini. Though it won’t become a habit.

    Reply
  30. Anne, Alessandro approves of olives in martinis. He liked matching the lemon with the Plymouth gin, which has citrus botanicals. (Though I must confess the nuances were probably wasted on my palate.) I did enjoy the martini. Though it won’t become a habit.

    Reply
  31. I have never had a martini. Ever. I think I must remedy that at some point.
    I don’t drink very much or very often. I do love champagne at the holidays, though. When we go on vacation, I order fruity frozen drinks at the pool bar which seem to have very little alcohol (a good thing). I like margaritas with sugar on the rim instead of salt, and once I had a rum drink called Jamaican Me Crazy, and it did. 🙂

    Reply
  32. I have never had a martini. Ever. I think I must remedy that at some point.
    I don’t drink very much or very often. I do love champagne at the holidays, though. When we go on vacation, I order fruity frozen drinks at the pool bar which seem to have very little alcohol (a good thing). I like margaritas with sugar on the rim instead of salt, and once I had a rum drink called Jamaican Me Crazy, and it did. 🙂

    Reply
  33. I have never had a martini. Ever. I think I must remedy that at some point.
    I don’t drink very much or very often. I do love champagne at the holidays, though. When we go on vacation, I order fruity frozen drinks at the pool bar which seem to have very little alcohol (a good thing). I like margaritas with sugar on the rim instead of salt, and once I had a rum drink called Jamaican Me Crazy, and it did. 🙂

    Reply
  34. I have never had a martini. Ever. I think I must remedy that at some point.
    I don’t drink very much or very often. I do love champagne at the holidays, though. When we go on vacation, I order fruity frozen drinks at the pool bar which seem to have very little alcohol (a good thing). I like margaritas with sugar on the rim instead of salt, and once I had a rum drink called Jamaican Me Crazy, and it did. 🙂

    Reply
  35. I have never had a martini. Ever. I think I must remedy that at some point.
    I don’t drink very much or very often. I do love champagne at the holidays, though. When we go on vacation, I order fruity frozen drinks at the pool bar which seem to have very little alcohol (a good thing). I like margaritas with sugar on the rim instead of salt, and once I had a rum drink called Jamaican Me Crazy, and it did. 🙂

    Reply
  36. Well, Maggie, if you are ever in London, visit Duke’s bar and have Alessandro make a martini for you. The ritual and his entertaining commentary are well worth it. But as I’ve said, I hardly ever drink mixed drinks either. But it’s fun to try new tastes, especially when they come served with such rich history.

    Reply
  37. Well, Maggie, if you are ever in London, visit Duke’s bar and have Alessandro make a martini for you. The ritual and his entertaining commentary are well worth it. But as I’ve said, I hardly ever drink mixed drinks either. But it’s fun to try new tastes, especially when they come served with such rich history.

    Reply
  38. Well, Maggie, if you are ever in London, visit Duke’s bar and have Alessandro make a martini for you. The ritual and his entertaining commentary are well worth it. But as I’ve said, I hardly ever drink mixed drinks either. But it’s fun to try new tastes, especially when they come served with such rich history.

    Reply
  39. Well, Maggie, if you are ever in London, visit Duke’s bar and have Alessandro make a martini for you. The ritual and his entertaining commentary are well worth it. But as I’ve said, I hardly ever drink mixed drinks either. But it’s fun to try new tastes, especially when they come served with such rich history.

    Reply
  40. Well, Maggie, if you are ever in London, visit Duke’s bar and have Alessandro make a martini for you. The ritual and his entertaining commentary are well worth it. But as I’ve said, I hardly ever drink mixed drinks either. But it’s fun to try new tastes, especially when they come served with such rich history.

    Reply
  41. When the Mayhem Consultant and I have a winter getaway coming up, our rallying cry is, “RUM DRINKS WITH FRUIT ON STICKS!”
    By which you can tell I’m not a serious drinker. *g* I like taste fresh fruit juice a lot more than I like the taste of alcohol.
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  42. When the Mayhem Consultant and I have a winter getaway coming up, our rallying cry is, “RUM DRINKS WITH FRUIT ON STICKS!”
    By which you can tell I’m not a serious drinker. *g* I like taste fresh fruit juice a lot more than I like the taste of alcohol.
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  43. When the Mayhem Consultant and I have a winter getaway coming up, our rallying cry is, “RUM DRINKS WITH FRUIT ON STICKS!”
    By which you can tell I’m not a serious drinker. *g* I like taste fresh fruit juice a lot more than I like the taste of alcohol.
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  44. When the Mayhem Consultant and I have a winter getaway coming up, our rallying cry is, “RUM DRINKS WITH FRUIT ON STICKS!”
    By which you can tell I’m not a serious drinker. *g* I like taste fresh fruit juice a lot more than I like the taste of alcohol.
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  45. When the Mayhem Consultant and I have a winter getaway coming up, our rallying cry is, “RUM DRINKS WITH FRUIT ON STICKS!”
    By which you can tell I’m not a serious drinker. *g* I like taste fresh fruit juice a lot more than I like the taste of alcohol.
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  46. Fun post. I’ve never had a martini. One of these days I’ll try one. My favorite drink is an Irish Coffee. I can make it and it is great on cold winter evenings.

    Reply
  47. Fun post. I’ve never had a martini. One of these days I’ll try one. My favorite drink is an Irish Coffee. I can make it and it is great on cold winter evenings.

    Reply
  48. Fun post. I’ve never had a martini. One of these days I’ll try one. My favorite drink is an Irish Coffee. I can make it and it is great on cold winter evenings.

    Reply
  49. Fun post. I’ve never had a martini. One of these days I’ll try one. My favorite drink is an Irish Coffee. I can make it and it is great on cold winter evenings.

    Reply
  50. Fun post. I’ve never had a martini. One of these days I’ll try one. My favorite drink is an Irish Coffee. I can make it and it is great on cold winter evenings.

    Reply
  51. My one claim to Hollywood fame.
    DW and I were at a Company party many years ago. Went to the bar, seated ourselves. And in comes John Wayne..The “Duke” and parks several seats down the bar. DW was 8 months pregnant at the time.
    As for a drink…Scotch straight anytime.

    Reply
  52. My one claim to Hollywood fame.
    DW and I were at a Company party many years ago. Went to the bar, seated ourselves. And in comes John Wayne..The “Duke” and parks several seats down the bar. DW was 8 months pregnant at the time.
    As for a drink…Scotch straight anytime.

    Reply
  53. My one claim to Hollywood fame.
    DW and I were at a Company party many years ago. Went to the bar, seated ourselves. And in comes John Wayne..The “Duke” and parks several seats down the bar. DW was 8 months pregnant at the time.
    As for a drink…Scotch straight anytime.

    Reply
  54. My one claim to Hollywood fame.
    DW and I were at a Company party many years ago. Went to the bar, seated ourselves. And in comes John Wayne..The “Duke” and parks several seats down the bar. DW was 8 months pregnant at the time.
    As for a drink…Scotch straight anytime.

    Reply
  55. My one claim to Hollywood fame.
    DW and I were at a Company party many years ago. Went to the bar, seated ourselves. And in comes John Wayne..The “Duke” and parks several seats down the bar. DW was 8 months pregnant at the time.
    As for a drink…Scotch straight anytime.

    Reply
  56. Mary Jo, those fruity drinks taste awfully good—probably because one is usually drinking them on a nice beach somewhere warm! And Patricia, Irish coffee is wonderful on a cold winter evening. The temperature is dropping here, so er, can I come over? LOL

    Reply
  57. Mary Jo, those fruity drinks taste awfully good—probably because one is usually drinking them on a nice beach somewhere warm! And Patricia, Irish coffee is wonderful on a cold winter evening. The temperature is dropping here, so er, can I come over? LOL

    Reply
  58. Mary Jo, those fruity drinks taste awfully good—probably because one is usually drinking them on a nice beach somewhere warm! And Patricia, Irish coffee is wonderful on a cold winter evening. The temperature is dropping here, so er, can I come over? LOL

    Reply
  59. Mary Jo, those fruity drinks taste awfully good—probably because one is usually drinking them on a nice beach somewhere warm! And Patricia, Irish coffee is wonderful on a cold winter evening. The temperature is dropping here, so er, can I come over? LOL

    Reply
  60. Mary Jo, those fruity drinks taste awfully good—probably because one is usually drinking them on a nice beach somewhere warm! And Patricia, Irish coffee is wonderful on a cold winter evening. The temperature is dropping here, so er, can I come over? LOL

    Reply
  61. Louis, how appropriate that you met “The Duke”. As for scotch, don’t get me started on that! Single malts are fascinating, and maybe I’ll do a future post on them . . . again, they are WAY too potent for me, but I love the history and the craft involved in making them.

    Reply
  62. Louis, how appropriate that you met “The Duke”. As for scotch, don’t get me started on that! Single malts are fascinating, and maybe I’ll do a future post on them . . . again, they are WAY too potent for me, but I love the history and the craft involved in making them.

    Reply
  63. Louis, how appropriate that you met “The Duke”. As for scotch, don’t get me started on that! Single malts are fascinating, and maybe I’ll do a future post on them . . . again, they are WAY too potent for me, but I love the history and the craft involved in making them.

    Reply
  64. Louis, how appropriate that you met “The Duke”. As for scotch, don’t get me started on that! Single malts are fascinating, and maybe I’ll do a future post on them . . . again, they are WAY too potent for me, but I love the history and the craft involved in making them.

    Reply
  65. Louis, how appropriate that you met “The Duke”. As for scotch, don’t get me started on that! Single malts are fascinating, and maybe I’ll do a future post on them . . . again, they are WAY too potent for me, but I love the history and the craft involved in making them.

    Reply
  66. My tastes would run to a vodka martini with James Bond. I’m not a fan of gin at all but prefer a good single malt Scotch (and would love to see a post on their nuances and lore sometime). So, if I do have a mixed drink, I drink one with an historical theme, a Rob Roy, which is a blend of that good Scotch and Drambuie. This was fun to read!

    Reply
  67. My tastes would run to a vodka martini with James Bond. I’m not a fan of gin at all but prefer a good single malt Scotch (and would love to see a post on their nuances and lore sometime). So, if I do have a mixed drink, I drink one with an historical theme, a Rob Roy, which is a blend of that good Scotch and Drambuie. This was fun to read!

    Reply
  68. My tastes would run to a vodka martini with James Bond. I’m not a fan of gin at all but prefer a good single malt Scotch (and would love to see a post on their nuances and lore sometime). So, if I do have a mixed drink, I drink one with an historical theme, a Rob Roy, which is a blend of that good Scotch and Drambuie. This was fun to read!

    Reply
  69. My tastes would run to a vodka martini with James Bond. I’m not a fan of gin at all but prefer a good single malt Scotch (and would love to see a post on their nuances and lore sometime). So, if I do have a mixed drink, I drink one with an historical theme, a Rob Roy, which is a blend of that good Scotch and Drambuie. This was fun to read!

    Reply
  70. My tastes would run to a vodka martini with James Bond. I’m not a fan of gin at all but prefer a good single malt Scotch (and would love to see a post on their nuances and lore sometime). So, if I do have a mixed drink, I drink one with an historical theme, a Rob Roy, which is a blend of that good Scotch and Drambuie. This was fun to read!

    Reply
  71. Thanks for the interesting post! I’m excited to find that our (rare) hosue martinis are like Alessandro’s–citrusy gin, little vermouth, and bruised lemon peel. Mm.

    Reply
  72. Thanks for the interesting post! I’m excited to find that our (rare) hosue martinis are like Alessandro’s–citrusy gin, little vermouth, and bruised lemon peel. Mm.

    Reply
  73. Thanks for the interesting post! I’m excited to find that our (rare) hosue martinis are like Alessandro’s–citrusy gin, little vermouth, and bruised lemon peel. Mm.

    Reply
  74. Thanks for the interesting post! I’m excited to find that our (rare) hosue martinis are like Alessandro’s–citrusy gin, little vermouth, and bruised lemon peel. Mm.

    Reply
  75. Thanks for the interesting post! I’m excited to find that our (rare) hosue martinis are like Alessandro’s–citrusy gin, little vermouth, and bruised lemon peel. Mm.

    Reply

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