W...wait, where are we? New Orleans? Who are you? No...we didn't, did we? Oh hell. How did we...oh Lord. Last I recall we were floating down the Mighty Miss on board the SS Admiral having a hell of a time. Could someone turn off the sun for me?
Heaven on Earth?
Well, I guess the Cabaret is back in New Orleans. On (in)famous Basin Street no less. And man are we feelin' it today. I guess I had a good time. Heaven only knows. Who's up for Hair of the Dog? A little trip down the stairs and I'm sure we'll find a place for libations. This is New Orleans, you know.
What the...do my blurry eyes deceive me? Well I'll be! Ladies and gentlemen, we have a celebrety here, none other than the Kingfish himself, the governor of the fine state of Louisiana and presidential hopeful, Huey Long!
Mixin' Up somethin' Good for what Ails ya! Public Servant indeed!
Now Mr. Long is a man of the people and has done a lot for his state. And my agent Mr. Siegel says he's a "man you can do business with," whatever that means. And right now he's doing us all a great big favor with the perfect accompaniment to Too Long of a Night, smooth music and a good eye-opening cocktail. The music is by none other than New Orleans native Louis Prima, who this morning (what? It's the afternoon?!?) is performing the work of another New Orleans native, songwriter Spencer Williams' Basin Street Blues. For the eye opener we have Governor Long's personal favorite cocktail, the Ramos Gin Fizz, a frothy concoction sure to settle that rumbling stomach and clear that aching head.
First the music. You might know Louis Prima and his New Orleans Gang from their hit single "Sing, Sing, Sing (with a Swing)", though to be honest you probably know it best from Benny Goodman's instrumental cover. But don't count Louis out, Pops, because this guy's got come back written all over him (our time travelling friends will know all about his Atomic era fame, including an ink suit appearance in Disney's Jungle Book as Louie the Orangutan). But his usual jumping sound will have to wait for later, less distressed times. Basin Street Blues feels just about right to me.
Nice and mellow?
Now, this morn...afternoon's drink, the Kingfish's favorite as mixed by the Kingfish's own favorite bartender, Samuel Guarino:
Ramos Gin Fizz:
Mix in a tall barglass in the order given; add crushed ice, not too fine as lumps are needed to whip up the froth on the egg white and cream. Use a long metal shaker and remember this is one drink that needs a long, steady shaking. Keep at it until the mixture gets body — “ropy” as some experienced barkeepers express it. When thoroughly shaken, strain into a tall thin glass for serving.
- from New Olreans DRINKS and how to mix ‘em by Stanley Clisby Arthur. HARMANSON, Publisher 333 rue Royale, Nouvelle Orleans; 1937
*Disclaimer: raw egg white can occasionally carry foodborne illness, so if you're not up to the task, take a pass, Jack!
Ah! Much better! I can see clearly once again! Folks, let's get the party goin' again! Louis, my man, how about a swingin' reprise for that party!?
Don't Stop the Carnival!
Info, receipe, and images for Huey Long and the Ramos Gin Fizz courtesy of India Ink Elephant.