Napoleon’s Own Cocktail
Napoleon was not known as much of a drinker outside of Chambertin wines. If he had been, history might have turned out quite differently. Get a few drinks into him and he might have even developed a sense of humor. Nah, he would probably have been a mean drunk. Even sober, he was apt to bash his chief of staff’s head into a wall when he got annoyed. That man was in serious need of anger management classes.
This cocktail comes from an interesting French tome called Bariana: Recueil Practique et Tous Boissons Americaines et Anglaises by Louis Fouquet, printed in 1896 in Paris. Despite the book’s title, this cocktail is probably a French invention.
1 oz London Dry Gin
1 oz Rye Whiskey
1 tsp. Rich Simple Syrup (une petite cuillerée)
1 tsp Fresh Lemon Juice
Soda water (optional)
Shake with ice and strain into a chilled glass. Top with soda water and garnish with a lemon peel.
It is a toss up whether to shake or stir this one as there is so little lemon juice. I prefer stirred whenever possible. I also prefer this drink without the soda topper which just serves to water everything down and you loose the nuanced play between the ingredients. It is a very well-balanced cocktail without the soda. Be sure to give that lemon peel a squeeze over the drink to express the oils before dropping it in. For another cocktail bearing the French emperor’s name see the previous post “I’ve Never Met Napoleon But I Plan to Find the Time.”
Perhaps if Napoleon had had a few more of these, he would have been content with most of western Europe under French control and not invaded Russia.