Wednesday, May 16, 2007

"A Generation, Lobotomized by Vodka"

My favorite quote of the year. It came from Audrey Saunders, the owner of Pegu Club, the high end cocktail emporium on Houston Street in NYC.

She said it after a few martinis, as part of a tasting panel in a New York Times article that ran on May 2. She and Eric Asimov and a couple others tasted 80 (!) martinis to find out which gins worked best in the classic drink. I wish I could provide a link, but the Times has started charging for the article.

Anyway, Asimov started off smartly, assigning all vodka martinis to the dustheap, calling them abominations and not martinis at all, but some other drink. A martini is made with gin and vermouth he degreed, and his co-horts agreed, except for Saunders, who at first struck a diplomatic note and said she had to respect the proclivities of her customers. Later on, however, she let fly with her true feeling in the above quote.

It's just how I generally feel about vodka drinks. They're tasty, sure. A few are classics (Moscow Mule, Bloody Mary). But vodka drinkers don't really like to drink, they like to get drunk with the least trouble possible. So they choose vodka. It had minimal flavor, offers no resistance as it travels down the throat, and is a great whore, coupling up with almost any liquid partner you throw at it.

So, come up with your own drink names, vodka. Stop riding gin's coattails, hoping it will lend you some class.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

This landed in my inbox this morning from the NY Times:

"The Times's Op-Ed and news columns are now available to everyone free of charge, along with Times File and News Tracker. In addition, The New York Times online Archive is now free back to 1987 for all of our readers."

Here's the link to article you mention:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/02/dining/02wine.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

Mick said...

late to the game, but you are my hero for this stance.