Felicitations! You have made it through Dry January, which calls for a drink. Oh, you weren’t doing Dry January? Well, never mind – have a drink all the same. It’s Wet February, the month where inhibitions are lost and resolutions trashed. And given the unhinged nature of the world at the moment, you could be forgiven for wanting to zone out for a while. To this end, I’ve been collecting the cocktail recipes that have the most booze in them: the mind-scramblers, the painkillers, the reverse epilators (they put hairs on your chest).
However, when assessing a cocktail’s strength, it’s worth bearing in mind the Long Island Iced Tea rule. Long Island Iced Tea was a popular disco drink of the 1990s, ideally sipped in Reebok Classics to a soundtrack of Oxide & Neutrino. It was pretty tasty, in a prelapsarian way – imagine if iced tea was synthesised in Doctor Octopus’s laboratory – but what really made it popular was the list of alcohols involved. Vodka, gin, tequila, light rum, triple sec, seriously…?
But the mistake here is to confuse variety with quantity. It’s no biggie having four types of white liquor when you’re only using a teaspoon of each and your principal flavour is industrial sour mix. What you have then is just an over-complicated rum and Coke – far weaker than your Golden Age cocktails such as the manhattan or obituary.