Monday, June 9, 2008

Bar Guide

Recently, while spending time with relatives in southern California I leaned that I had a distant relative named Lawrence Blochman, who back in the fifties, wrote a book about cocktails. It's called A Round the World Bar Guide Here's How! It contains "Nearly 400 drink recipes, from America's most famous foreign correspondents members of the overseas press club." I don't know very much about Mr. Blochman. I'm not sure if he was a drunk, a womanizer, or something unpleasant like that. But he was certainly witty and well informed, and for that he has my admiration.

I picked up the old book and it fell apart in my hands. I spied the recipe for a daiquiri. Here's what Mr Blochman had to say:

"... the best rum drinks are all variants of the standard US Navy tipple, a favorite in officers' clubs from Guantanamo to Panama: rum gomme, and lime. Even the queen of rum drinks, the Daiquiri, one of the basic cocktails, is built to this pattern:


2 ounces Bacardi Rum
i teaspoon sugar
Juice of 1 small lime

Shake with plenty of cracked ice until you are out of breath and your eyes begin to glaze. Then strain into chilled cocktail glass.

The daiquiri (call it Dackeree if you want, but the correct pronunciation is Dye-kee-ree) is credited to some American engineers who, after the Spanish-American War, were stationed at a place in Cuba called- you guessed it- Daiquiri. And since Daiquiri was midway between Guantanamo Bay and Santiago, where the Bacardi people were conjuring up their precious elixir, the original Daiquiri was made with Bacardi rum..."

I always though daiquiris were silly, colorful, umbrella-clad monstrosities for middle aged fat people. I stand corrected. It's a pretty straight forward, strong cocktail.


Alexander Santillanes said...

I love old guides to cocktails and entertaining- that one looks like a classic. Any chance you'll post some of the more deserving drink recipes? -X

a said...

I would like to but I don't have the book in my possession. Next time I'm in Southern California, I'll do another post. As I'll soon be living in the bay area, I'll be able to visit Southern California with somewhat more frequency. Any requests?

Robyn said...

Excellent! Last year my dad gave me his old cocktail guides.

One is called 'A Guide to Pink Elephants'. The other, in a chapter called 'What the Well-Stocked Bar Will Need', observes: 'Half the fun of casual drinking is lost if you mix your cocktails in the kitchen.'

I've been meaning to post on them.

a said...

Post away!