Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Cocktails Of The Week: The Letters R & S:
Red-Headed Woodpecker And Sputnik


It's funny. When I made the New Year's Resolution to have "a cocktail a week," my friends had said, "Well..work your way through the alphabet a few times," and here it is with the end of the year approaching, and only if I'm diligent will I have made it through once. With a record like this, how will I ever be part of that louche lush life society?

The cocktails this week were "R" and "S": Red-Headed Woodpecker and Sputnik, followed with some Lemon Drop Martinis to cleanse the palate. I had an idea in my head of what I wanted to do with the photography. It would involve my brother's skills, so I took the drinks out to the bar's patio area, and I used my black coat as a backdrop to set the drinks off in the light. A man who looked vaguely like Joe Isuzu came wandering out with his drink and a cigarette and said, "Are you getting ready to do a magic trick?" Well. In a sense I was, through the wizardry of Photoshop, but more on that later.



I used to have about four or five species of woodpecker come into my yard. Most are smaller with dots of red on their heads, but every so often I would see a pileated woodpecker which is the largest species in North America (19 inches) and
is the origin of the Woody Woodpecker cartoon character with it's shock absorbing red crown. Sometimes you will see things in nature that will stop you dead in your tracks, and this bird can do it. Here's how you make the Red-Headed Woodpecker cocktail:

2 ounces Malibu coconut rum
1 ounce Amaretto almond liqueur
2 ounces orange juice
2 ounces pineapple juice
splash of cranberry juice


Pour ingredients into shaker with ice and serve in a hurricane glass. I garnished mine with a strawberry impaled on a straw to duplicate a woodpecker's head with the green of the strawberry duplicating it's crown.


Table for One? The Red-Headed Woodpecker Cocktail



When the Russians successfully launched their sate
llite called Sputnik in 1957, it heralded a turn in the Cold War. It was the first time the Russians had the chance to control space with the threat of nuclear power always looming large in the background, but it affected culture as well.




You can still find retro Sputnik light fixtures at auctions, and Vegas lounge singer Louis Prima recorded a song called "Beep, Beep, Beep," that was basically a song about his girlfriend going to the moon, and as the lyrics tell you:

My baby's going on a trip to the moon,

And she won't be back soon.
She doesn't write me, and I can't sleep
All I hear from her is BEEP! BEEP! BEEP!

All of the beeps and bloops were not provided by t
he singer, but rather sound effects culled from cheesy sci-fi flicks. And the space race began. Here's how you make the Sputnik cocktail. I borrowed some toothpicks to decorate the cherry and keep the drink thematic:

1 1/4 ounces Vodka
1 1/4 ounces Peach Schnapps
3 ounces orange juice

3 ounces light cream

Mix all ingredients in shaker with ice until frothy. Pour into brandy snifter glass and garnish with cherry with four toothpicks to duplicate the satellite. The original instructions say to garnish with a peach slice, but I prefer my method for the visual.



Beep! Beep! Beep!....the Sputnik Cocktail



*** I would like to thank my brother, battling the flu, for using his graphic artistic talent in creating these images. I provided him with the raw material, but it was his skillful manipulations that really made the pictures work.

13 Comments:

Blogger Miss.Q said...

I can't wait to try the red-headed woodpecker. Sounds Delis

Very cool picture!!!

10:29 AM  
Blogger playfulinnc said...

Love the cherry sputnik on the top! Too funny...

10:40 AM  
Blogger DC Cookie said...

I'm creating a drink special list for our next happy hour on the 30th. I might have to borrow some ideas ;-)

11:29 AM  
Blogger I-66 said...

I love the woodpecker cocktail photo -- you and your brother work well together.

12:26 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

they say woodpeckers are the biggest alcoholics among the bird community.

3:25 PM  
Blogger Megarita said...

Genius. Best cocktail lesson ever. Is it time for a drink when both of these sound perfect? Heck, 4:30 is close to 5...

4:39 PM  
Blogger always write said...

I'll be asking for these at the blogger happy hour tonight. Wish you were here!

5:10 PM  
Blogger Merujo said...

There is a terrifying large woodpecker that has gone to war with the tree outside my building. One morning when it was drilling away at 6 a.m., I went out on my balcony and attempted to shoo it away.

Bad move.

Never try to shoo away an enormous, angry bird (with a huge, sharp beak) that moves faster than you do. Lesson learned. Scars nearly acquired.

11:28 PM  
Blogger A Unique Alias said...

That is some great photomanip :-)

9:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Sputnik cocktail had me humming "Telstar" til my husband rebuked me, " That's not the theme for Sputnik?" Well, fine. It was Sputnik that forced me as an elementary school child to be subjected to tons of additional math instruction. Damned Russians. Math was never my strong point (to my Father's [he was a chemical engineer]everlasting chagrin.

To get over that trauma, I think a cocktail is in order.

Keep up the good work, Cube. T is the next up.

grince

11:27 AM  
Blogger Sharkbait said...

Great pics-your brother is talented.

Love the suggestions and the idea of working your way through the alphabet. Too much!

3:05 PM  
Blogger Asian Mistress said...

I didn't even read the post because I liked the graphics so much. :)

Guess a picture is worth 1000 words...

Haha, guess I'll go back and read now!

3:07 PM  
Blogger ThaiMex1 said...

"T" is the next UP?

Waddasecond...sounds to ME like someone needs a Tetanus Shot:

Ingredients Amt
Run, overproof/151 proof ½ oz.
Rumple Minze ½ oz.
Southern Comfort 1 dash

Mixing instructions:

Combine overproof rum and Rumple Minze in a shot glass. Top with a dash of Southern Comfort.

Glass to use:

Shot glass


T-Squared

oh, and Grince? Please don't use my initial in vain.

8:10 PM  

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