Sunday, June 9, 2013

Mad Men Cocktail Hour - The Vodka Gimlet

Happy Sunday Lovelies!

I just returned from a fabulous French Brunch and shopping for tonight's Mad Men Cocktail Hour and I realized that, with my LONG hours at work, I had not posted anything for last week's Mad Men episode!  Quelle Horreur!!  So, before I dive into all the other things I have to do today, I am going to remedy that situation.

photo courtesy of Bridget
Last week's featured cocktail was the Vodka Gimlet.  Ever since the finale of season 2 - 'Meditations in an Emergency' (which derives its name from Frank O'Hara's collection of poetry that I've always wanted to read), I've considered the Vodka Gimlet to be Betty Draper's drink.  In that episode, Betty finds out that she's pregnant, goes to get her hair done, and does a little retail therapy.  She then ends her day at a bar (the excessive drinking while pregnant is still shocking for me to see) where she orders one of these drinks.  As soon as she gets there, she is hit on by a stranger and winds up having sex with him in what I think was the manager's office in the back of the bar.  Classy.  While Don sleeps with anything that moves, I think it's far more trashy to find out you're pregnant and proceed to have sex with a random stranger.

photo credit

But let's not get ahead of ourselves - you know how all this works.  First we focus on the cocktail.  Like many other cocktails, this one has many variations, but what all the recipes have in common is the vodka and lime juice.  We decided to start off with the recipe from the Mad Men Cocktail Guide.  This one is pretty standard and is shown served in a rocks glass.  Others use Rose's Lime Juice (which is sweet), simple syrup, or a sugared rim and are served in a martini glass.  When Bridget came upstairs for Cocktail Hour, she brought with her some simple syrup that she'd made and I was so glad that she did.  Both of us agreed, that this drink needed something more that just lime juice (DEFINITELY go for fresh) and vodka.  Adding some sweetness cut the acidity and balanced out the drink very well - as Bridget said, it tasted like an adult limeade!!  While the other drinks we've made have been pretty to look at, I took the opportunity with this drink to pull out my fancy vintage martini glasses since I knew the cloudy nature of this drink would not be too pretty in a clear glass, but look fabulous against the black of these beauties!  And I was not wrong.  Here you can get more detail of the stemware.

The original gimlet was made with gin, but much like the martini, it is now far more popular made with vodka.  The history of this cocktail dates back to the late 1800's.  Some believe that the gimlet got it's name from the small hand tool, called a gimlet.  (Bet you didn't see that one coming)  This tool is used to drill small holes into wood without splitting it, which may have lent its name to the drink for it's 'piercing' effects.  The other, more flashy and probable story, was that British surgeon, Sir Thomas Gimlette, was trying to find a way to prevent scurvy in the British Royal navy and came up with the Gin Gimlet as a pleasant way to have sailors consume lime juice.  The Merchant Shipping Act of 1867 required all ships of the British Royal Navy to provide a daily ration of lime juice to the sailors and Lauchlan Rose invented Rose's Lime Juice which allowed citrus juice to be preserved without alcohol.  It is believed that the original gimlet was created specifically with Rose's Lime Juice, so it really shouldn't be a surprise that between the British Royal Navy, Rose's Lime Juice, and Gimlets the British are called Limeys.  YES!! This is most likely where that term of endearment was born!

And now onto last week's episode.  This one was not as flashy as some of the recent episodes, but it covered much ground.  I always love seeing these characters out of their element and with Don, Roger, and Harry all going to Los Angeles, I was quite entertained!  The party that Harry takes them to is so stereotypical of the late 60's in the drug use and the hippies and the fashion.  I am very glad I wasn't around during that time but it was some spectacular eye candy.  Just seeing Harry's (fake) sideburns next to Roger's sailor outfit is enough to make any bad day better!
photo credit
A close call for Don in the pool ends the trip on a sour note and these characters return to New York with a more resolute hatred for Los Angeles - not unlike the LA/NY rivalry that is still alive and well today.  I know that things are quite different, but can't we just call a truce?  There's so much to love about each a West Coaster that has many East Coast attributes (I've been told many times that I'm living on the wrong coast), this hatred makes me sad.

Back at home, there's some upheaval at the office when Joan deliberately cuts Pete out of a meeting with Avon.  This opportunity to get Avon's business landed in her lap and Ted just handed it to Pete without so much as a second thought.  While I know this is standard and Joan is not an Ad Man, she's a partner and capable of so much more than day-to-day operations.  She should not have been cut out of the meeting, shouldn't have had the opportunity stripped away from her.  And it should especially not have been given to slimy little Pete Campbell.  Seriously, can't we get rid of this self righteous, whiny little dick already?  NO ONE HAS EVER LIKED PETE.  Seriously.  While Peggy was very upset with Joan about going around Pete and potentially losing the client with her lack of experience, she still threw Joan a life preserver in the meeting with Pete and Ted, showing that there is a really fantastic loyalty there.

photo credit

Last week, I brought up Bob Benson and how little we actually know about him.  This episode showed us more of the brown-nosing and potentially ulterior motives, maybe even being in cahoots with Jim Cutler, but we'll have to see where all that goes.  I can't help but think he will explode, in what way I'm not quite sure, but we're going to see something big from him in these last episodes.

There's actually a lot that could be discussed about this episode, but since this week's Mad Men Cocktail Hour is set to commence in approximately two hours, this abridged version will simply have to do.

Happy Viewing Lovelies!!

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