DC Drinks

Reviews, rantlets and ribald on all things alcoholic.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

A Guide to Drinking in Muslim Southeast Asia

In the past two weeks I've met more Muslims that in my entire life. At first, I thought they were going to go all Ian McKaye on me when I mentioned that I needed a beer after a long day working in the tropics of Indonesia and Malaysia, but I was wrong ... sort of.

If you find yourself in this part of the world, fear not; there are ways to live a sane drinking life in the land of Allah.

Rule #1: Make friends with the local Chinese. Even though the Chinese have been living in southeast Asia for 600 years, they're discriminated against by law and sometimes attacked and killed by fanatical Muslims. That's cause to drink. Lots. As you can see in this picture during a presentation I gave to a group of farmers, Tiger Beer is no enemy of the Malaysian Chinese. And dinner for these guys is wild boar liver that almost rips your teeth out. I heard in China they drink like in this picture, except it's Chinese rot-gut liquor instead of beer.

Rule # 2: Don't let your Muslim friends buy the beer. When my Muslim business partners found out I drank, they stocked our car with a six pack. Nice gesture, right? No. Having no idea that beer is supposed to be kept cold, the cans were hot to the point of exploding from sitting in the car all day by the time I knew they were there. Depending on religious conservatives to get you booze is like depending on a virgin to write a sexual positions book. Oh wait, that's what happened with the Kama Sutra.

Rule # 3: Don't let your Muslim friends prepare the beer. Beer on the rocks? Beer mixed with Coke? (The cola settles in the bottom of the glass into a black sludge, I swear to god). Yep, I've had to choke that shit down here. And when you squeeze lime into the local brew to make it half drinkable, they give you shit! Fight back with all you've got.

Rule # 4: Lose your snobbery. Get used to the ubiquitous international lager because you'll be lucky to have it at the end of the day. Indonesians drink Bintang (Star) Beer and Malaysians drink Tiger Beer. Tastes exactly like Isaac described months ago. But it definitely beats not drinking at all.

Monday, January 08, 2007

DCDrinks Communique #1

At DCDrinks we write for Drinkers, capital "D". We have scoured recipe books from 1911 for the first jello shooters; We have experimented by making Creme de Menthe and still realized there is no way to make the Stinger taste remotely good; We have cried at a perfectly made Martini, cold rim beckoning our quivering lips; We have lined up 130+ proof ryes to taste and pass out in pursuit of finding the exact proof that one reaches Nirvana; We have eschewed flavorless beverages and crowned craft producers of the world king; We have even argued how much pulp to put in a Gin & Juice; We are brothers and sisters bound to the glass, mug and cup, feverishly driven by the pursuit of drinking the very best booze we can.

Drinkers of the world: You are our people, and we are yours.

As this community grows, we rejoice that the world is right and good. However, at DCDrinks we don't care if we were read by one single solitary reader, provided that reader whinces at the thought of leaving bitters out of a Manhattan, or has raced home after the pounding drudgery of the day to pour poetry in a shaker, carefully, measured by a jigger and steady hand.

But over the past year we've entertained and amused thousands of passerbys who are searching for dirty martinis, cosmos and roofies (and, anyway, what's the f-ing difference). We appreciate your curiosty but we don't like you. We don't want you. Unless you're willing to try something better, to take a leap and reach beyond the safety of Grey Goose and soda, we despise you.

However, we'll give you one last chance. (It is a new year.) One chance to join the fold. To be a better drinker and by doing so enrich the world. But listen. And no negotiations. If you haven't tried the following cocktails, go to your local watering hole and demand them right away. This is my personal favorite list. There are many more. But I believe it's a good start.

Just make sure to consult the cocktail database for recipes. Don't let the bartender screw them up. If you must, buy the ingredients and make them yourself. If you haven't tried these cocktails than don't read DCDrinks anymore until you have. No interest in drinking them. Don't come back now, ya here.

1. The Martini
(Gin, Vermouth, Orange Bitters NOT Vodka)

2. The Sazerac

3. The Aviation
(This is tricky, I've only known one person to make this drink so beautiful that I wept like a losing Top Model contestant)

4. Apple Ginger Sangaree

5. Corpse Reviver #2

6. Pisco Sour

7. The Bronx

8. The Blinker

9. The Americano

10. The Mai Tai
(The REAL Mai Tai: Aged rum, lime juice, orgeat syrup, triple sec, simple syrup, mint leaf)

(Where's the Manhattan? #11. Sorry Manhattan fans!)

Anyone care to amend?

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Hungover Easy: Egg Drop Soup for the Drunk Soul

I'm still hungover. The day-after the night-before party may have contributed to the mild nausea, aches and pangs I feel. Magnums of Gosset Champagne, Alto Moncayo (16.5% alcohol!) Garnacha and good old Thomas Handy Rye are all to blame. But I'm not even slightly detered.

Folks, ladies and gentlemen of the cyber-booze world, children, pets and your respective owners, I have unequivocally discovered the cure for hangovers: Egg Drop Soup.

That's right. Egg Drop Soup is a little miracle from the land of the Great Wall, political oppression and Chairman Mao paraphernalia. Take the long march down to your local Chinese food source and order it now, and never fear the perils of "over drinking" again.