Monday, 29 October 2012

Death in the Afternoon re-visited


Two years ago at Halloween, I examined the Corpse Reviver No. 2:

a classic cocktail to enjoy at any time. In fact since then I have enjoyed this at Boston's backbar, and was also pleased to see Boston's Royal Sonesta making a ready bottled version!

For more details of this, see the excellent IndulgeInspireImbibe blog.

This Halloween, I want to look at another classic absinthe cocktail, and to see how it might be twisted to make it even more suitable for Halloween: the famous Death in the Afternoon, invented by Ernest Hemingway. The cocktail shares its name with Hemingway's book Death in the Afternoon, and the recipe was first published in So Red the Nose, or Breath in the Afternoon, a 1935 cocktail book with contributions from famous authors (coincidentally 1935 was the year when La Clandestine Absinthe was born). Hemingway's original instructions were:

"Pour one jigger absinthe into a Champagne glass. Add iced Champagne until it attains the proper opalescent milkiness. Drink three to five of these slowly."

I have always enjoyed Death in the Afternoon, but have also been aware that it might be a little dry for some people's tastes, especially if using a top quality champagne. So I was pleased to have the opportunity to try an interesting variation on this when my US partners visited us in Switzerland recently and suggested using a Swiss sparkling rosé to make a Death in the Afternoon.

Maybe it was the rosé itself (a little over-powering), or maybe it was the temperature of the rosé (ambient), but although it looks gorgeous, this didn't quite work. So with Halloween approaching, I tried again, this time with a Jacob's Creek sparkling rosé, which is probably easier to find in most countries. And to add some atmosphere, I dug out my daughters' Halloween straws and dimmed the lights ...

First the jigger of La Clandestine Absinthe, then top up with the sparkling rosé (I did top it up, but the members of the tasting panel sampled it before I could take my next photograph).

Nice colour, but maybe for Halloween, it needed a bit more drama. And so I added a few drops of blood ...

a.k.a. Grenadine.

Perfect to look at ...

... and perfect to taste. Not too dry and not too sweet, with the absinthe and sparkling rosé working very well together.

Of course a good cocktail needs a good name. I thought about calling this a Bloody Death in the Afternoon, but that might make people think it contains tomato juice. And for Halloween, I think a murder sounds better than death. It's definitely not an afternoon drink either, hence the final name .. Murder in the Evening. If you like a Death in the Afternoon, I think you'll love this. At Halloween or at any time.

Santé!

3 comments:

Jerry Davis said...

Brilliant!

Nick Rhodes said...

Hi there,

Nick Rhodes from Liquor.com here. Couldn't find your email address on the site. I wanted to drop you a quick note to say hi and mention that we’re developing a new and pretty exciting "best of the web" section on Liquor.com that we’re calling DrinkWire. Our site is an expert guide to the world of cocktails and spirits, and this new addition will feature stories from top journalists, bloggers, bartenders and other knowledgeable folks across the world. I was curious if you would be interested in being one of our contributors?

Being a contributor to DrinkWire is super simple and should provide lots of extra exposure, reach, SEO and traffic for your site and content. More or less, we're building DrinkWire to be Liquor.com’s very own community of expert cocktails-and-spirits contributors—aggregating the best content from top blogs, sites and experts across the web and promoting it to our entire audience. Our ultimate goal is to create a network of content from around the world, including cocktail recipes, bar reviews, spirits tasting notes and everything in between.

Once you sign up and create your DrinkWire account, you can submit posts directly through the DrinkWire dashboard (either by manually composing/submitting them or dynamically by selecting recent stories pulled into your DrinkWire dashboard via your site’s RSS feed). Your dashboard will also keep track of stats like how many people are checking out your content and how many posts you’ve made.

If you’re ready to sign up, please go here to create an account: http://drinkwire.liquor.com/dashboard/user/signup. Once you sign up and create your DrinkWire account, our system will begin crawling your site (optional) and you should see an archive of existing posts available for submission to us within a few hours.

We won’t use posts from you unless you specifically submit them to us via your DrinkWire dashboard or if you tag them with either “DrinkWire” or “Liquor.com” on your end. However, from time to time our editors may ask for your permission and authorization to use a post we like that you didn’t submit. The goal is for us to get more great content on our site and for you to get more exposure and readers to your site. Please note that by signing up for the community, you’re giving us a license and permission to use your content.

As you register your account, please make sure to take a moment to upload a photo and fill out your profile (all totally editable any time in the future): http://screencast.com/t/AUH66hTzSazi

Please let me know if you have ANY questions. The entire signup process is very quick and easy, but if you have trouble, don’t hesitate to drop me a line or give me a call/text at 908-612-9223. Thanks!


Best,

Nick Rhodes

--
Nick Rhodes | Liquor.com | DrinkWire Content Community
Email: rhodes@liquor.com | Mobile: 908-612-9223

Nick Rhodes said...

Hi guys,

I wanted to drop you a quick note to say hi and mention that we’re developing a new and pretty exciting "best of the web" section on Liquor.com that we’re calling DrinkWire. Our site is an expert guide to the world of cocktails and spirits, and this new addition will feature stories from top journalists, bloggers, bartenders and other knowledgeable folks across the world. I was curious if you would be interested in being one of our contributors?

Being a contributor to DrinkWire is super simple and should provide lots of extra exposure, reach, SEO and traffic for your site and content. More or less, we're building DrinkWire to be Liquor.com’s very own community of expert cocktails-and-spirits contributors—aggregating the best content from top blogs, sites and experts across the web and promoting it to our entire audience. Our ultimate goal is to create a network of content from around the world, including cocktail recipes, bar reviews, spirits tasting notes and everything in between.

Once you sign up and create your DrinkWire account, you can submit posts directly through the DrinkWire dashboard (either by manually composing/submitting them or dynamically by selecting recent stories pulled into your DrinkWire dashboard via your site’s RSS feed). Your dashboard will also keep track of stats like how many people are checking out your content and how many posts you’ve made.

If you’re ready to sign up, please go here to create an account: http://drinkwire.liquor.com/dashboard/user/signup. Once you sign up and create your DrinkWire account, our system will begin crawling your site (optional) and you should see an archive of existing posts available for submission to us within a few hours.

We won’t use posts from you unless you specifically submit them to us via your DrinkWire dashboard or if you tag them with either “DrinkWire” or “Liquor.com” on your end. However, from time to time our editors may ask for your permission and authorization to use a post we like that you didn’t submit. The goal is for us to get more great content on our site and for you to get more exposure and readers to your site. Please note that by signing up for the community, you’re giving us a license and permission to use your content.

As you register your account, please make sure to take a moment to upload a photo and fill out your profile (all totally editable any time in the future): http://screencast.com/t/AUH66hTzSazi

Please let me know if you have ANY questions. The entire signup process is very quick and easy, but if you have trouble, don’t hesitate to drop me a line or give me a call/text at 908-612-9223. Thanks!


Best,

Nick Rhodes

--
Nick Rhodes | Liquor.com | DrinkWire Content Community
Email: rhodes@liquor.com | Mobile: 908-612-9223