May 29, 2009

Yellow journalism, red drink.

William Randolph Hearst was a newspaper magnate who never let the facts stand in the way of a good story. He's got a drink named after him already, though, so we'll move along. One of his enduring legacies, however, was "yellow journalism," wherein legitimate news was soft-pedaled, and attention-grabbing, sensational headlines were elevated to above the fold. Perhaps the most egregious example was how the unverified (and as yet unproven) assertion that the USS Maine exploded in Havana harbor due to a bomb or torpedo, an assertion which helped to touch off the Spanish-American War. A popular rallying cry became "Remember the Maine, to hell with Spain!" Not terribly clever, but catchy. So much so, it seems, that "Remember the Maine" became the name of a cocktail. And it tastes pretty good, too.
Remember the Maine

2 oz Bourbon whiskey (or rye, which I prefer)
3/4 oz sweet vermouth
1/4 oz Cherry Heering
dash of Pernod
2 dashes of Angostura bitters

Stir all with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
Between the spiciness of the rye, the sweetness of the vermouth, the back of the throat tartness of the Heering, and the anise notes of the Pernod, you've got a lot going on in this drink. Happily, the elements work pretty harmoniously, as long as you don't overdo the Pernod. I wouldn't make a habit of drinking this every day, but it's one to keep in mind for an occasional tipple, especially when you want something a little different.
Remember the Maine


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