Will Rogers Cocktail
1/4 Orange Juice. (3/4 oz Orange Juice)
1/4 French Vermouth. (3/4 oz Vya Dry Vermouth)
1/2 Plymouth Gin. (3/4 oz Plymouth Gin, 3/4 oz Bols Genever)
4 Dashes Curacao. (1 tsp Bols Dry Orange Curacao)
Shake (I stirred) well and strain into cocktail glass.
I’m not quite sure how to handle a figure quite so mythic to the early part of the 20th Century as Will Rogers.
The best thing I could find about him is this kind of long video segment from some time in the 50s, but I still don’t think it conveys the extent of his influence on popular culture during the depression as the Cowboy Poet, Philosopher and voice of reason.
Well, if there’s a cocktail named after him, the first thing I tried to find was some information about whether he did in fact take a drink now and then.
I did find a google book result from a speech he gave shortly after the enactment of prohibition, it comes from a book, “In Our Own Words: Extraordinary Speeches of the American Century”.
I have often said that wish the wets would become so soused they would be speechless and couldn’t say anything, and that the drys would become so perfect that the Lord would come down and take them away from here–and that would leave the country to the rest of us who are tired of listening to both of them.
Aside from this sensible bon mot, I find not a whole lot of evidence against Will Rogers either as a dry or wet, particularly, though some other quotes indicate he may have had some familiarity with Whiskey.
The cocktail itself is an inoffensive draught, a slightly orangey Dry Martini.
I am bulking up the the bog standard modern Plymouth with a bit of Bols Genever for body and maltiness.
I hadn’t tried the Vya Dry Vermouth for a few years, and this evening it was either that or Martini & Rossi Extra Dry at the Grocery. I am unclear I made the right choice. It was, as usual for me, the more expensive choice. But, I don’t know, there is a surprising amount of bitter character to the Vya dry vermouth. And, as a friend once remarked, “it doesn’t really taste like Vermouth. More like mulled wine.”
Well, it doesn’t really hurt anything in the Will Rogers.
This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.