I have a problem. A drinking problem.
I know that I have enough willpower to overcome it, but sometimes I feel paralyzed.
The trigger is simple: Someone walks up to me in a public place and asks me what I would like to drink.
That’s it. That’s the whole problem. I know it doesn’t seem like it should be a problem, but it most certainly is. It’s like being in a foreign country and being asked what you would like for lunch? I might really want tacos, but I don’t think they have very many tacos in Venice, and even if they do have them, they might not be any good. You know what they say, when in Rome, don’t order the tacos.
This is how I feel when I’m trying to order a drink from a bartender that I don’t know.
It isn’t for lack of bar knowledge, it’s just that each bar has its specialty and not all bars are good at making certain drinks.
For instance, there is a bar here in Atlanta that I frequent, especially in the summertime, for their tiki drinks, like Dark’n’Stormys made with fresh ginger, and impeccable Mai Tais. They also make a good Sazerac with a flamed lemon peel and everything. HOWEVER, when you order an Old Fashioned (which should be very similar to a Sazerac), they muddle fruit in the drink and add a splash of soda water. It’s 1980’s method of making an Old Fashioned that I personally wish would have disappeared with Milli Vanilli.
The other problem comes when you know what drink you want, but you’re unsure if the bartender will know it. Maybe you want a Sidecar, or a Fitzgerald, or a Saratoga Cocktail but if you order these, you may have to instruct your server on what’s in it and how to make it, which is embarrassing for everyone involved.
It makes me nervous every time I have to do it. Without fail.
What is far better, is having a well stocked bar to yourself. Left to your own devices, you can take stock of bar and begin working accordingly.
Does the bar have whiskey? Yes. What kind? Rye, bourbon, irish and scotch. Perfect. Does it have vermouth? Yes. What kinds? French and Italian (dry and sweet respectively). Absolutely perfect. Any garnishes? Cherries, limes, lemons, oranges, olives, and tiny umbrellas. Fucking awesome. Let’s make a goddamn Manhattan.
Just kidding. Unfortunately, we’re not making Manhattans this week. Well...we might, but it won’t have anything to do with Archer.
My point is, sometimes it is less stressful to take the helm of a bar yourself, even though it takes more work than ordering from a bar, simply because you can take inventory and make the drinks that you know and love without having to translate or instruct.
This week, we have a fully stocked bar and the options are numerous. So numerous that I’m actually going to leave the most mentioned drink out of the TIP, simply for the fact that telling you about it, would ruin the joke. After the episode airs, perhaps we’ll add an addendum.
That said, if you ever get access to a fully stocked bar, and you are interested in taking full advantage of your good fortune, you might want to consider making:
LONG ISLAND ICED TEA
The story of this drink is vague and doesn’t likely date very far back. The inclusion of vodka and tequila are the giveaway there, since those ingredients weren’t used in American drinks in much frequency until the 50’s or later (this drink showing up in the mid 70’s). The foundation for this drink is simple: Equal parts gin, vodka, white rum, & tequila. From there, variations occur. The official recipe calls for an equal addition of Triple Sec, double part of lemonade, and a splash of cola. For those who like to measure, it looks like this:
- 1 oz Gin
- 1 oz Tequila
- 1 oz Vodka
- 1 oz White Rum
- 1 oz Triple Sec
- 2 Tbsp Lemon Juice (fresh squeezed)
Pour ingredients into a collins glass with ice and stir to combine, top the drink off with cola, and garnish with lemon wedges. Some people actually use sweet tea instead of cola. Other people replace the “mixer” entirely, by using sloe gin, or other sweet liqueurs that soften the drink, while still bringing more alcohol to the party. Personally, I think 4-5 oz of high proof booze is plenty.
I honestly don’t like Long Islands, for the fact that I like to keep it simple, and mixing 5 different spirits to achieve a drink that tastes like none of them, isn’t my idea of a pleasant drink. That said, I like this next drink even less, for similar yet different reasons:
The Fuzzy Navel
Your mom will love this:
Equal parts Peach Schnapps and orange juice, over ice. You can make it lighter by dividing the portions by 3, equal parts schnapps, oj, and lemonade. OR, you can make the drink into a Hairy Navel by adding some vodka to the mix, thus stiffening it a bit. There are no “official” proportions to this drink, so vary them to your preferences.
This is going to sound strange, but I want you to eat something that looks like food, but is actually made of soy. So, eat a soy burger, with soy-cheese and tempeh bacon, with soy tomatoes... or, wait. You get the point. The idea is to eat soy that has been used to make a "faux" food product. Edamame does not fit this criteria. Neither does tofu. But Tofurkey does.