It’s the spooktacular time of year, and the houses in my neighborhood are adorned with spider webs, tombstones, creepy crawlies and other items that go bump in the night. Not only is this chilling holiday nearly here, but it’s also the perfect time to watch monster movies). Of course, you should never watch a movie – any movie – without the perfect drink, so here are a couple creepy cocktails for your next fright fest. All of these drinks are from Good Spirits: Recipes, Revelations, Refreshments, and Romance, Shaken and Served with a Twist.
Monkey Gland: This goes with any King Kong movie, as well as Mighty Joe Young, who isn’t so monstrous, but who is a giant ape. It also goes well while watching the 1932 version of Murders in the Rue Morgue. And no, there are no real simian glands in the drink.
1-1/2 ounces gin (I think Sun Liquor’s Gun Club gin is ape-ingly good here)
1 ounce freshly-squeezed orange juice
1/2 ounce absinthe (Pacifique absinthe is the one to use)
1/4 ounce grenadine (make your own)
1. Fill a cocktail shaker half way with ice cubes. Add everything. Shake well.
2. Strain into a cocktail glass.
Shark: Da dum, da dum, da dum. Da dum, da dum, da DUM. Serve up these cool chillers when you watch JAWS (the first one, and maybe the second one if you’ve had enough drinks.)
1-1/2 ounce vodka (Seattle Distilling Company’s Rocket vodka is safe)
1 ounce orange curaçao
1/2 ounce freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
Chilled ginger ale
1. Fill a highball glass three quarters up with ice cubes. Add the vodka, curaçao, and juice. Stir once (watching for fins).
2. Fill the glass up with ginger ale. Stir well.
Corpse Reviver: This could also go well with zombie movies, but I like it best when watching either the original Bela Lugosi Dracula or one of the early Hammer Christopher Lee vampire gems (and anyway, you should drink a Zombie when watching zombie movies). This, canonically, is made with Cognac, but use a good brandy if needed and you won’t suffer.
1-1/2 ounces Cognac (or brandy)
3/4 ounce apple brandy
3/4 ounce sweet vermouth (I like Carpano Antica)
1. Fill a cocktail shaker or mixing glass halfway with cracked ice. Add everything, carefully, as you don’t want to wake the dead too soon. Stir well.
2. Strain the mix into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a tombstone, if a small one is available.
White Spider: Okay, I know tarantulas aren’t white, but I love the 1955 giant-spider movie Tarantula, and think that this arachnid-themed bev makes a perfect accompaniment. So, break a little of the bounds of reason here, and pretend that tarantulas could be white, and you’ll have a fantastically creepy evening.
1. Fill a cocktail shaker half way with ice cubes. Add the gin, Cointreau, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Shake for at least 16 seconds (two seconds for each leg).
2. Strain into a cocktail glass. Twist the twist over the glass and drop it in.