The Hour

A Cocktail Manifesto

by Karen Zarker

17 December 2010

 

It’s nearly impossible to get a really good cocktail these days. Unless you’re the kind who can afford to leave your cashmere with coat check and raise nary an eyebrow at a meal with drinks that costs hundreds—for one—you’re stuck with the average over-sweetened, maraschino cherry accented, two-ingredients schlock that passes for ‘cocktails’ at the average bar and restaurant.

For those who refuse to sip such things and say, “Mmm, this is good,” comes this delightful challenge to one’s refined tastes and cultivated snobbery—and it’s priced for the average Joe’s budget. With a wit that might make you spill your Manhattan, mixed with a keen storytelling approach that might make you confuse this for literature, The Hour is a delightful lesson in the proper way to make a proper cocktail. Think of it as a Henry Higgins approach to an aspiring Eliza Doolittle; that is, as an instruction booklet that will slap your hand one moment, then gently take that hand and lead you down to your own basement distillery wherein miracles—providing each step is properly executed—will happen.

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