The phrase, “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation” has never rang so true for so many.
We are all pretty much on the same path, the same schedule. This town, like most towns in America, is shut down. Many of us are going along with the stay-home directive because we know it’s the right thing to do. It’s the only thing to do. It’s the decent thing to do.
But that does not make the ensuing boredom and cabin fever any easier to tolerate. We all have many tasks and joys that we badly want to experience. We all are acutely aware of harsh consequences for ourselves and for our friends if we don’t hew the line.
I keep trying to bring humor to this article and cannot. Nothing funny about thousands of people infected and hundreds taken from our midst.
Let’s however assume that we stay the course, that we are spared whatever agonies Corona awaits to inflict, and that we deserve a reward, a little break from the TV, the internet and accomplishing/avoiding all those tasks that have been awaiting our energies for so long.
We can intelligently add variety to late afternoons while wondering do we add lime or lemon to a mixed drink; do we shake it or stir it; or do we simply pop the top on a can of beer.
Desperate times call for happy voyages of discovery. (I just made that up in case you were wondering. You weren’t? Don’t blame you.)
Hendrick’s Gin Cucumber Lemonade
A dandy idea given our already-summerlike temperatures
- 2 parts Hendrick’s Gin
- 1-part lemon juice
- 1-part sugar syrup
- 2 parts soda water
- 3 thinly sliced rounds of cucumber
Combine all ingredients in a highball filled with cubed ice. Lightly stir and serve. Garnish with 3 thinly sliced rounds of cucumber & 1 slice of lemon.
Garnish: Three thinly sliced rounds of cucumber and one slice of lemon
Balvenie DoubleWood 12 Year Highball
When you are in the mood to properly reward yourself
- 1-part Balvenie 12-year DoubleWood
- 2 parts club soda
- Lemon wedge garnish
Created by Charlotte Voisey, Flor de Caña Brand Ambassador, who no doubt had New Orleans in mind during the creative process.
- 1-part Flor de Caña 7 Rum
- ¾ parts Campari
- ¾ part Sweet Vermouth
Combine ingredients and stir well. Strain over a large block of ice in a rocks glass. Spritz and garnish with a large orange peel.
Just in case you are seeking a way to pep-up a not-quite-up-to-standards take out meal, and you don’t want to break-out the ice bucket and shaker, let’s try an adult beverage from which you only have to remove a cork or twist a cap:
** Champagne – enjoy as high a style as you can comfortably afford, but wine with bubbles from the Champagne region of France is always the right answer.
** Sancerre – Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire Valley of France is one of those wines you never forget. If you are stubborn and only drink red wine, from the same region, a cabernet franc from Chinon.
** Pinot Noir – America has come a long way in making this grape something special. Notable regions of origin are Russian River, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, and Willamette Valley (Oregon). There is, of course, Burgundy in France, notably from the commune Gevrey-Cambertin.
So, there you have it. You are home but that does not mean the end of living well. Embrace variety. Have fun. Evidently we are going to be here for a while. Make the most of it all.
Read Happy Hour here on myneworleans.com on Thursdays, and listen to The Dine, Wine and Spirits Show, hosted by Tim, every weekday, 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. on WGSO 990AM and streamed, as well as stored (podcast), at www.wgso.com. Also, check out Last Call, Tim’s photo-feature about cocktails every month in New Orleans Magazine.