This week we welcomed a new friend to take part in our travels through the worlds of linament, Old Spice and Worther's candies. Is was an appropriate time to go back to where it all began - Cuba!
The |" presidente " in this case would be Gerardo Machado, the right-wing strongman who ruled Cuba with an iron fist from 1925 to 1933. This particular drink was first concocted by an American bartender working at the Jockey Club in Havana during Prohibition. According to legend, Machado once offered one to Calvin Coolidge while the U.S. president was attending a conference in Havana. "Silent Cal" declined. The easy-sipping drink later became the house cocktail at the swank Club El Chico in Manhattan's Greenwich Village, where the high-hatted swells dubbed it "an elixir for jaded gullets."
"Always try to achieve your goals. But that's not for everyone."
- Clifford, 60, musician
1.5oz white rum
3/4oz orange curacao
3/4oz dry vermouth
Dash of grenadine
As an introductory class in drinking (Old Man-style) we couldn't have scripted a better drink. I was seeking refuge from yet another drink with gin and I have been dreaming of that night so many months ago when all this started with the Cuba Libre. It seemed a natural that we would go back to the beginning so that's what we did.
As it turns out, orange curacao isn't the easiest liqueur to source in this fine province, so I had to consult the World Wide Web to see what they'd suggest. As it turns out: orange curacao, Triple Sec and Grand Marnier are somewhat inter-changeable. Given the choice, try to substitute Triple Sec if possible because its got a more pure orange flavour and will more accurately replicate the taste that you're going for.
We cracked the bottles open and got with the drinking as we got to know one another. It was nice to have someone new come out and play and change up the dynamic a little. Also, having a 4th to play rock band with us didn't hurt either. Maybe it was the bottle of rum that we polished off or maybe it was the Rilo Kelly:
but I've got a new appreciation for rum! You've gotta be careful not to be over-zealous with the grenadine: a little goes a LONG way. But to be honest the vermouth was largely tamed and everything came together really well and the drink became much more than the sum of its parts.
If you're looking for a real nice Saturday night, I'd suggest inviting a few of your best friends over, serve some El Presidente's and let fun happen! This drink gets 4 breasts out of 2 red-heads.. and if that's wrong, I don't want to be right! Until next time dear friends...