The literature: T.S. Eliot’s THE WASTE LAND
The libation: If your sommelier is moving a little slowly today, friends, please forgive her. Last night she discovered the glory, the transcendent seasonal beauty, the earthy, spicy taste of the dirty pickled ramp Gibson. After one, she was in love. After two, she wanted to wax rhapsodic about the subtleties of flavor, the ephemerality of spring, the underappreciated appeal of the savory cocktail. After three… she was pretty tipsy, so she didn’t.
She did, however, locate a recipe so she could share the sublime joy of this cocktail with the rest of you. To wit: stir together 2.5oz gin (Plymouth or similar), 0.5oz dry vermouth, and about a quarter-ounce of the brine from your pickled ramps (use more or less to taste, depending on how dirty you like it, you naughty thing). Serve in a lowball glass and garnish with several pickled ramps. If you’re feeling particularly saucy, crack a little fresh black pepper on top.
As you sip, reread Eliot’s masterpiece and muse on the cruelty of April that leads to the fleeting bounty of your cocktail garnish, and take a moment to reflect on how you, too, are “mixing/Memory and desire, stirring/Dull roots with spring rain.”
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