An ode to vodka

A blonde woman walks into a bar.

‘I’ll have cosmopolitan’, she says.
‘We have a two for one daiquiris tonight’, the bartender replies.
‘I’ll have a cosmopolitan’, blondie says in an anxious tone.
‘We also have a great version of an Espresso Martini. It’s our signature cocktail’.
‘I’LL HAVE A COSMOPOLITAN’.

That’s two nips vodka, one nip cointreau, cranberry and a dash of lime. Served in a cocktail glass. It’s a pretty colour and I don’t care how trendy an Espresso Martini is right now. I WANNA COSMO.

You see, eighteen years ago someone bought me my very first cocktail. My good friend Jane. She was (and still is) an outstanding friend. Jane became an even better gal pal after shouting me 2 nips vodka, 1 nip cointreau, cranberry and lime…… The grand occasion is even marked with a photograph. Yes, I have red hair and yes, I thought that was a good idea at the time.

My life suddenly has new meaning.

We were at ‘Doyles’. The fish and chips were somewhat average, but it was a momentous day. Jane had started something big. I’d discovered my favourite drink and there was no stopping me now.

The love affair with this SATC liquid icon continued. Jane (clearly pleased with her handiwork) and I were still chug-a-lugging two years on. The camera came out again. Her cocktail acolyte was now fully fledged and forever grateful. I’d also improved the hair somewhat.

Cheers sweetie.

Inspired, I began to teach others the way of the Cosmo. The pupil was now becoming the master. My bestie Lisa was reticent to join the cult, but here she is in 2003 being initiated into the sisterhood of 2 nips vodka, 1 slug cointreau, cranberry and lime. She has remained with us. (Although she does occasionally transgress and imbibe Midori and lemonade #thehorror).

I’ve snagged another convert.

I have remained faithful to my New York icon drink of choice. I sometimes wonder why I can’t be lured away from what is now a little old fashioned in the cocktail department. I think it’s because we like to cling to something that is a happy memory. Something a special friend bought us, feeling ‘grown up’, an association with something iconic, a signature stamp people link to our identity. That, and the indisputable fact that Cosmopolitans taste delish.

I went to the Mecca of Cosmo in 2013 when I visited The Big Apple. It was the grand finale of the ‘Sex and the City’ tour. Well duh. I won the trivia contest on the tour bus. Again…. duh. SATC watchers will know that Steve and Aiden go into business together and own a bar named ‘Scout’. The name is fictional but the bar exists. At the end of said tour everyone piles off the bus and gets a Cosmo. My word I was happy that day. I had worshipped at the shrine. A blatantly excited tourist and I couldn’t have cared less.

O’Neals Grand Street Bar. Used as the set of ‘Scout’ in SATC.
Photo of the production line of Cosmopolitans taken on my enthusiastic visit.

Other bevies will come and go, but the Cosmopolitan will always be a classic. It remains an eternally happy memory for me. Such little things are special markers in our lives. If you come to my place, and you’re not the designated driver, odds are I’ll have the cocktail shaker out. The vodka will be in the freezer, cranberry will be in the fridge and the cointreau and limes will be ready to go on the kitchen bench.

Cocktail hour for the ladies.

Cheers sweetie. xxxx

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