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"Here's How To Mix The Perfect Cocktail"


HE:The Magazine for Men

vol. 1, no. 1 April 1953

     "Whiskey, they say, is typical American drink. This is true to the extent that Americans drink three times as much whiskey as any other drink. But: real Americanism is cocktail, so much so that in France, England, they are referred to as 'American cocktails.'
     The task of mixing a proper cocktail is an art. Very few know how to do it right: yet same ingredients which produce masterpiece in the hands of experts can be poisonous with mishandling. Point is this: well mixed drink goes down smoothly, warms, not burns, stomach.
     For the benefit of the average drinker, who mixes only occasionally, HE presents some basic rules, recipes, for proper cocktails. 
     Remember: good cocktail is blending, not hodge-podge, of ingredients. Here are things to watch:
     1: All utensils, glasses should be clean. Nothing is as unpleasant as spots of dust, dirt, in a drink.
     2: Cocktails, (with the exception of toddies), are meant to be cool. Better to take extra minutes to insure proper temperature, than serve guests warm drinks.
     3: Measuring utensils, such as jiggers, etc. are for a purpose. Good bartenders can measure with eye, but average drinker is better off using glass.
     4: Best ingredients will produce best cocktails: but good drinks can be made with ordinary blends, less expensive liquors. Schenley's a good one. This is important when budget is small, party large.
     5: Cocktails are for before dinner, highballs for after. A dry Martini will not settle large meal.
     6: Weird mixtures are waste of time. Anyone who puts raspberry syrup, wine, brandy in the same drink deserves to be sick as he will be. Skip experiments, stick to standards.
     7: Last but not least: drinking is for pleasure. Unless you enjoy throwing up over the balustrade, take it easy. And not when you're driving, ever. Here are the drinks.

Martini: Probably the most famous of all, Martini has as many variants as there are bartenders. Most books make them two parts gin to one part vermouth: but who drinks them that way? Best bet is four to one. Stir, don't shake ingredients with cracked ice, or ice cubes. Either is okay: cracked will cool drink faster, but contrary to common opinion, you'll get the same amount of water either way. Garnish is a question of taste. Better to rub lemon twist around glass than dunk it. Onion (cocktail size) is preferred by some, is usual in Gibson, 7 to 1 Martini. 

Manhattan: Made 2 to 1, or 3 to 1. Bourbon is best, but any reasonable blended whiskey is okay. Either sweet or dry Vermouth, depending on taste. Serve sweet Manhattan with cherry, dry with olive or lemon peel, as in Martini.

Whiskey Sour: Teaspoon of powdered sugar, juice of 1/2 lime, juice of 1/2 lemon, two ounces of whiskey. Shake well in cracked ice, decorate with lemon peel, cherry. Some bartenders skip the lime, but it is a good idea. A good whiskey sour should be foamy on top. Recommended for hangover.

Old Fashioned: 1/2 lump of sugar, 2 dashes of Angostura bitters, whiskey to taste, 2 dashes Curacao if desired. Muddle, garnish with slice of lemon and orange.

Tom Collins: Tablespoon of powdered sugar, juice or lemon, gin as desired. Shake with cracked ice, add soda water, serve in tall glass. Can be garnished with lemon slice, cherry, etc., but most men prefer it without. Tom Collins is hot weather only drink. Another good one for summer is Gin and Tonic. Two ounces of gin, quinine water, plenty of ice. Variant of Tom Collins is French 75, where champaign is substituted for soda water. Not recommended for your niece from Miss Amelia's School for Girls. Whiskey or rum Collins is made the same way, with desired liquor substituted for gin.

Singapore Sling: This is famous old man-killer, but not as potent as claimed, although it will do a job. Jigger of gin, followed by glass of shaved ice, followed by half jigger of cherry brandy, followed by dash of Dubouchette Benai liquor. Garnish with orange peel, cherry, peel of cucumber. Don't shake; the colors are pretty, and powerful.

     These are standards. Others, to be tried only when the boys are by themselves, can be dangerous, but interesting. For example:
Sea Breeze: This is the sneaker of all time. College students specialize in this one because it is cheap, powerful, and tastes innocuous. Just grapefruit juice, soda water, and gin, mixed in equal parts. A shot of powdered sugar helps. If the date hasn't been warned, it's a good bet.

Whiskey Slush: Another college favorite, invented by famous bon vivant H. James Pratt, to be used where ice is not readily available. Pack snow in old fashioned glass, cover with powdered sugar, pour whiskey over all. Glass will take plenty of whiskey, even when full of snow, but worth it.

Fish House Punch: A real tricky item, but worth it. Mix juice of six lemons, 1/2 pound or powdered sugar, 1/2 pint brandy, 1/4 pint peach brandy, 1/4 pint Jamaica Rum, 3 quarts soda water. Cool punch bowl with cake of ice. This is one that your Aunt Fanny will call delicious-before they carry her out.

     One last word about highballs. When you do not know company's preferences tall drink is best bet. But make them strong. Ordinary bar drink, with one shot of whiskey, in not enough. Two full ounces, three if guests like them potent.
     This article is a guide for social drinker, not for drunks. Mixing automobiles and liquor is inexcusable. If you drink don't drive."

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