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Tag Archives: gin cocktail

Moonrise Kingdom

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Moonrise Kingdom

Image credit: Moonrise Kingdom, 2012

There’s nothing like young lovers and a vintage New England setting to get me excited for summer. Of course my all-time favorite example of this is A Summer Place, but with his 2012 film Moonrise Kingdom (DVD/Download), Wes Anderson created a modern summertime masterpiece. It may not have Troy Donahue in short-shorts, but Bill Murray does sport some nifty madras pants.

Set in the fictional town of New Penzance, Moonrise Kingdom features wainscotted homes full of sturdy antiques, a picturesque lighthouse, rocky beach coves, and pine forests. I can almost smell the salt air, and the vintage postcard-style cinematography is truly transporting. Like any Anderson film this one is full of bizarrely perfect casting, like Bruce Willis as a lovelorn sheriff, Edward Norton as an Eagle Scout troop leader, and Tilda Swinton as a comically severe social worker. The pre-teen lovers are both disaffected to the outside world yet earnest with one another, and as they dance in their underwear to the music coming from a portable record player, I find myself longing to be even half as cool.

There’s nothing like a freshly pressed scout uniform to make you think of summertime cookouts, the open air, and wilderness lodges. This film deserves a drink that’s crisp, refreshing, and easy to make indoors as well as out. While watching Moonrise Kingdom, I recommend drinking a Khaki Scout Cooler.

Khaki Scout Cooler

1 ½ oz Gin

2-3 dashes celery bitters

½ oz Maraschino liqueur

4-5 mint leaves

1 slice of cucumber

1 lime wedge

Topo Chico sparkling water

Muddle mint leaves and cucumber with the maraschino liqueur at the bottom of a Collins glass. Add gin, bitters, and ice. Top with Topo Chico (or sparkling water) and squeeze the lime wedge, dropping into the glass.

Khaki Scout Cooler

photo by @pop_up_cobra

I may be stuck in the fiery pit of hell that is Texas in the summer, but this movie just begs to be watched outdoors. Luckily I’ve got a refreshing cocktail on tap, a pair of madras shorts, and a portable fan. Record player optional. Cheers!

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Midnight in Paris

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Midnight in Paris, photo courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

Midnight in Paris, photo courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

This week is something I’ve been looking forward to since I started Cinema Sips. I hate to play favorites, and obviously I’m still discovering new cocktails while I write this blog, but if I had to chose a favorite drink, it would definitely be the French ’75. Typically I’ve been starting with the movie and finding a drink that I think pairs nicely with it. But in this case, the French ’75 is so special to me that I couldn’t wait for a movie to come along that would inspire me to choose this drink. This week, I searched my DVD (and VHS and Laserdisc!) collections in order to find the best excuse possible to make a French ’75, and I finally settled on one of my favorite films of the past few years, Midnight in Paris.

I was never a huge fan of Woody Allen’s older films (sorry, not even Annie Hall) but I really love his newer works. What I love about Midnight in Paris is that although it’s a completely absurd scenario (a writer travels to Paris with his obnoxious fiance, and while walking the streets at night, finds himself in a time-warp of literary giants) I really root for the characters and want this plot to be a reality. Every night at midnight, this writer (played by Owen Wilson) is transported to his dream era- Paris in the 1920’s. It was the heyday of writers and artists and thinkers, and also a heyday for cocktail drinkers. Coincidence? I think not. He meets F. Scott Fitzgerald and his charming wife Zelda (played brilliantly by Alison Pill), along with Ernest Hemingway, Gertrude Stein, Man Ray, and Salvador Dali. When I first read about the plot of this movie I thought it sounded absurd; however, Owen Wilson’s wide-eyed, giddy portrayal of the modern writer makes me feel more than excited to go on this journey with him. And while you’re going on this journey, why not enjoy a fabulous gin cocktail?

Over the years, I’ve honed my recipe of the French ’75, and now lucky readers of Cinema Sips get to reap the benefits:

Fitzgerald’s French ’75

1oz dry gin

½ fresh lemon juice

½ oz simple syrup

2oz chilled champagne

1 lemon twist

Combine gin, lemon juice, and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker over ice. Shake until cold, then pour into martini glass. Top with champagne and lemon twist.

French-75

I chose Midnight in Paris for my French ’75 pairing first of all because of the film’s Parisian setting, but second of all because it’s widely known that F. Scott Fitzgerald was a heavy gin drinker. This is my very favorite gin cocktail, so what better way to celebrate a literary hero of mine. Also, this drink feels like a cocktail of a bygone era, and like the main character, I dream of being transported back to a time when all of these amazing artists were mingling and creating and making history. By the end of the film, Owen Wilson realizes that everybody has their own unique ideal time and place. I’m lucky that I can truthfully say I’m living in mine right now-  Austin TX circa 2013. But if I ever want to take a vacation (in my mind) to the most fabulous version of Paris, I just have to put on this movie and make sure the gin is cold and the champagne is flowing. Cheers!