The Weekly Drank: The Fig Leaf Cocktail

Fig leaf cocktail, as edited with Afterlight.

The semester’s finally winding down, which means I can get back to my much-neglected everything blog. And build my “author” website. (It feels strange to call myself a writer; I won’t truly be an author, in my eyes, until I’ve got something published. And no, blog posts don’t count.)

I’ve got so many wonderful ideas for posts. Cocktails, reviews of wine and beer, book reviews, movie reviews, TV show reviews. Life instructables. So then why in this wide, wide world am I not writing them down? Good question. Anyway, that all ends today. I’m bringin’ it back, baby, and the first thing I’m covering is my favorite thing in all the world: a fine, stiff drink.

First, a Rant. I go on Pinterest, and all I see are these stupid Disney Princess cocktails. Here, to prove my point, I’ll go to my Pinterest page right now and tell you what the first alcoholic beverage I see is.

Mango Coconut and Orange Vodka Crush. See what I mean? You take a regular ol’ sweet drink, add vodka, and call it a cocktail. And Wooooo! We’re gettin’ drunk tonight!

Me, I approach my drinking much differently. Call me a snob if you will, I’m sure it won’t be the last time I come across as such. I like my cocktails boozy and old-fashioned. I don’t drink to get drunk. I drink to enjoy my drink. (And to enjoy the buzz that comes afterword, of course–but I never have more than one drink. I’m 100% serious.) And it’s hard to enjoy a drink when all you want to do is slam its sugary-sweetness down and ask for another, please.

Am I making sense? I have this theory about Americans. (Oh, here she goes–a theory about Americans.) I feel like we coddle ourselves too much, don’t challenge ourselves–including our tastebuds. Instead of straight espresso, we order a grande hazelnut frap with extra whip. Drinking straight espresso is challenging. I can’t even do it–I’m still working on black coffee. But at the same time, the sense of deprivation leads to a sort of pride at having built up a tolerance, a toughness. And I think that deprivation leads to the ability to deprive yourself of more things in life, like the fifty dollars-worth of vape flavors that were just too good of a deal to pass up, even though you took out a massive payday loan ten minutes earlier. Cough, cough.

Rant Over. Let’s talk about the Fig Leaf.

According to the article on TheKitchn.com, this is a reverse cocktail, meaning that the focus is on the aperitif wine (in this case, sweet vermouth) rather than the liquor (in this case, rum). It’s an interesting concept–apparently you can make a reverse cocktail out of anything, really: reverse martini, reverse Manhattan, even a reverse margarita, though I can’t imagine that would be much good…

Now, I love me some sweet vermouth, and rum is good, too. The combination sounded intriguing, so on Friday night, after a very long and frustrating day at work, I decided to mix myself a Fig Leaf and enjoy it with a bowl of kettle corn and Dark Shadows streaming on my laptop.

Two of these three decisions were good decisions. I’ll save my review of the disaster that is Dark Shadows for a little bit later.

The cocktail was very satisfying: sweet, boozy, and perfectly tart from the lime. I’m writing this a few days after the fact, so I can’t elaborate much more than that. Pity–I’ll make sure my regular Weekly Drank features are recorded in real time. Anyway, all I know is that it packed a punch, and that I would definitely recommend it to anyone looking to expand their cocktail-drinking horizons.

The Fig Leaf

1 1/2 oz. sweet vermouth
1 oz. light rum
1/2 oz. lime juice (I just juiced a half lime and used it all)
2 dashes Angostura bitters

Combine all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake it up–I like to give it about 30 good shakes, until the outside is nice and frosty and hard to handle. Pour it into a cocktail glass or a champagne coupe garnished with a lime peel and enjoy.

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