Sunday, June 03, 2012

Whiskey Sour and Good Music

"Down on Lexington they're wearing
New shoes stuck to aging feet
And close their eyes and open
And they'll recognize the aging street
And think about how things were right
When they were young and veins were tight
And if you are the ghost of Christmas Past
Then wont you stay the night?"

Ne Me Quitte Pas (2002) by Regina Spektor

I had my first Whiskey Sour several years ago when a good friend of mine took me to a bar which he thought made it the way it's supposed to be made, and I can't say I was terribly impressed with what was presented to me that night. Now that I'm making them myself, the Whiskey Sour had a became a personal after-dinner staple of mine. To a shaker filled with ice, I pour in one-and-a-half shot of Maker's Mark bourbon whiskey, a single shot of freshly squeezed lemon juice, and a half shot of simple syrup (which you can make at home by mixing equal parts water and sugar). Then, I gave it a good 15 seconds of vigorous shaking before straining it into a rocks glass filled with new, crisp ice.

Homemade Whiskey Sour
Some people like a little egg white to go with it, but euuughhh.

This is a boldly flavoured cocktail. The tartness of fresh lemon juice blends quite well with the sweetness of the bourbon (a balance you may not be able to achieve with say, a scotch). For garnish, I usually float an orange wheel on top - and if I don't have any oranges at hand, I would still sling a teeny-tiny splash of orange juice in the mix anyway. I find that it goes a long way in taking the edge off.

About me? I'm okay, I guess. I have reached a kind of plateau of misery and there are just miles and miles of monotonous emotional wasteland stretching out in every horizon. The highlight of my week was pretty much the moment when I heard The National's rendition of The Rains of Castamere at the end of the Blackwater episode of Game of Thrones. It was every bit as chilling as I imagined it when it played during its iconic moment in the third book of A Song of Ice and Fire.

Oh, Regina Spektor's new album, What We Saw from the Cheap Seats, also debuted last week and let me tell you: it did not disappoint one bit. My immediate favourite track from it was How which (like One More Time With Feeling from her 2009 album) has that familiar iconic flavour which made me think that I must have heard it a long time ago, but I couldn't have. Maybe it's the simplicity of the arrangement. Maybe it's the old-fashioned romance and naiveté shining through in its lyrics. Or maybe, it's just the heartbreaking sincerity in Ms Spektor's beautiful voice.

"Oh baby, how can I begin again?
How can I try to love someone new?
Someone who isn't you?
How can our love be true
When I'm not, ooh, I'm not oh-ver you?"

Call Them Brothers, which she sang in haunting duet with Jack Dishel of Only Son, was another track I have on loop in my playlist. There's also Patron Saint, a deceptively jaunty song which I like very much and in it, she laments the fact that true love exists. I tend to agree. After all, only hopeless romantics who believe it exists would try to look for it, right?

Today, my posting in Neurology ends. Tomorrow will be my first day in Cardiology in an entirely different hospital. I feel nothing.

Asking how,
k0k s3n w4i


nicoletta said...

drink up and turn up the music. it absolutely makes sense. when I came across the word "plateau" I immediately thought of that Bruce Lee plateau quote. Which I'd found really awesome and really cornily inspirational. and funny too. I guess it's somewhat inappropriate to the context of your blog post =) here's to hoping some kind of tectonic emotional uplift will radically change that bleak landscape in your head. for the better.

anyway, I pass many of my nights watching rented out TV series and reading absolutely terrible/awesome fanfiction. and lord I actually enjoy myself.

Anonymous said...

Halloween's up in october, so it's ample time now to invent cocktail recipes for the occasion! Since u are a doctor working in a first-class hospital (i pray, for my potential admission in future), how about something real gory, scary, and don't mix the usual "bloody mary" - give us drinks inspired by autopsies, aborted foetus, amputated limbs, embalming, exploded eyeballs, workshop/car accidents, beheadings, nympho nurses in fishnet stockings and nothing else ... so how? Unleash your inner voice of doom & angst. Who knows, maybe your recipes could go viral!

k0k s3n w4i said...

nicoletta: you have not heard music until you've heard it drunk, ma'am. meanwhile, i'm still waiting for the earth to move for me. i'm starting to come to terms with the fact that that's not a terribly effective strategy.

Anonymous: i haven't got the intuition that people who make up cocktails have, unfortch. i did however thought up a gag cocktail which is made up of one part cream, one part clear creme de menthe and one part brown cacao, shaken with ice. i call it the koothrappali. then i realised that that's racist.