Friday, February 28, 2014

never too old for toys ...

... and never too old to be learning. Even if the learning seems a little frivolous. I might not ever be a (professional) bartender, and I think Bieber is the worst human alive, but hey man, never say never. All this talk about vino and shit, I think deep inside all I am is a frustrated cocktail slinger.

I am the last barman poet
I see America drinking the fabulous cocktails I make
Americans getting stinky on something I stir or shake
The sex on the beach, the schnapps made from peach
The velvet hammer, the Alabama slammer ... 
I make things with juice and froth
The pink squirrel, the three-toed sloth.
I make drinks so sweet and snazzy
The iced tea, the kamakazi 
The orgasm, tthe death spasm
The Singapore sling, the dingaling.
America you've just been devoted to every flavor I got
But if you want to got loaded, why don't you just order a shot?

- Brian Flanagan, Cocktail (1988)

Spain still makes my (big) head spin. And sometimes not in a good way. Or maybe it's just the Catalans, but man, it's hilarious the way they just assume the worst about you. It's never, let me find out why you're bank account is locked, let me help you figure out why your metro card malfunctioned. No. Them folks here ... it's an interrogation of you didn't make sure that I didn't validate shit properly even though technically that's entirely my responsibility and hey cabrone, I'm not replacing your metro card, you could have stolen it. Visca el Barça i visca Catalunya, right? But credit where credit is due. The cocktail culture here is off the charts. The Spaniards have a unique, incredibly distinct approach to cocktail making, and they really have a way with gin. Enough to cover their other blemishes? That may be a matter of opinion, but for this wino, it does make them a bit more bearable.

Garnish tongs. You see, they don't actually touch the garnishes with their hands, as is the custom in the  (what I consider to be) other 2 great cocktail cultures of the world, America and Japan. Everything is done with tongs, including expressing those beautiful oils from whatever citrus zest the cocktail calls for. And it's 10 times harder than Cristina (Slow Barcelona) made it look. But we keep practicing and playing.

Relax. I'm joking about a career in bartending ... for now. 


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