I am savouring my nights in the South of France. It seems almost every night there is something. Whether it's music, a dinner party, a bottle of wine between a friend or a couple of bottles between a group of us. The nights crawl into the early morning hours and I drink it up. Happy to be immersed in this culture and becoming more and more at home here.
Last week Marion and I decided to throw an impromptu cocktail party. We emptied the liquor closet at my house, picked up a few essentials, and made some party snacks (if you have not tried Boursin cheese rolled up in ham, do it).
It was one of those simple nights where nothing and everything happened. We drank with her younger sister and her boyfriend, invited a couple more friends from another village, danced to Blondie, smoked too many rolled cigarettes and had our usual long talks about being twenty somethings.
We laughed that we could have spent all this time living steps apart and not knowing each other. I am so grateful that we have become friends.
First round of the evening featured Cosmopolitans.
- 1 1/2 oz vodka
- 1 oz Cointreau orange liqueur
- 1/2 oz fresh lime juice
- 1/4 oz cranberry juice
Round two is a personal favourite: the South Side. The Southside mobsters drank this in Chicago during Prohibition while on the other side of town hoodlums enjoyed the Northside (gin and ginger ale).
- 2 oz gin
- 3 cucumber slices
- 3 mint leaved hand-clapped
- 20ml sugar syrup
- 25ml fresh lime juice
- Garnish: 1 slice of cucumber rubbed on the rim of the glass and placed in the cocktail
Round three was recommended by a friend. He didn't give me name for it but he said it is known to be a lady killer (not that he knows by experience). The ladies did love it.
- 2 oz vodka
- Pineapple juice
Round four was one of Marion's favourites: White Russians.
- 1.5 oz vodka
- 3/4 oz coffee liqueur
- 3/4 oz cream or milk
We started drinking around 6 p.m. We were really good at pacing ourselves, and with the help of cigarettes, dance breaks and food, never really got drunk. But we were persistent. By the end of the night we were experimenting with Gin Fizz and rhum based cocktails. When we realized we should maybe get some sleep the sun was pouring through the windows and it was 6 a.m.
So we had a 12 hour cocktail party. I'd say it was a success.
“Drinking is an emotional thing. It joggles you out of the standardism of everyday life, out of everything being the same. It yanks you out of your body and your mind and throws you against the wall. I have the feeling that drinking is a form of suicide where you're allowed to return to life and begin all over the next day. It's like killing yourself, and then you're reborn. I guess I've lived about ten or fifteen thousand lives now.” ― Charles Bukowski