Ben Schott does the best NYTimes Op-Arts, thought I think his previous entries had actual art… In any case, here are a whole bunch of NY cocktail bars sharing slang that’s either unique to them, or common in the world of bartending. My favorite is “Boomerang”.
A specially prepared drink that is sealed (say with plastic wrap or a rubber glove) and dispatched as a gift to a nearby bar. Of dubious legality, Boomerangs are a way of “having a drink” with industry friends during work. Boomerangs are often shuttled from bar to bar by regulars, who are thereby identified as guests of quality.
On Quirk Books the other day, a post about the drinking habits of your favorite author. I feel like this could get filled out quite a bit with more authors, but it’s a good start.
Raymond Chandler (Whiskey or Gimlet): Whether Chandler preferred whiskey or a gimlet (combining 2oz gin and Roseâ€™s Lime Juice) is up for debate, as many people tend to confuse him with the hardboiled, first-person protagonists of his stories. He definitely drank both, and drank often, and in large quantities. Chandler own lifestyle probably inspired the noir archetype of the hard-drinkinâ€™ detective as much as his books did. The most famous story goes that when he found himself unable to complete the screenplay for The Blue Dahlia, he went on a week-long bender, fully supported by the movie studio. He consumed nothing but bourbon for a week as he pounded out the ending of the script, and the film producers hired a doctor to inject him with vitamins twice a day, as well as a number of secretaries to be at the ready to assist with dictation, typing, and other emergencies, should the need arise.
It worked. Eight days later, the script was finished. A month after that, Chandler finally recovered from his hangover. “Alcohol is like love,” he once wrote. “The first kiss is magic, the second is intimate, the third is routine. After that you take the girl’s clothes off.”
In case you needed to make cocktails more interesting.