The Twenty-Four Nineteen

So named for the (roughly) 24" of snow this storm's dropped on us so far, which has been falling (last I checked) at about 19 degrees.

Like most of Massachusetts, today I was both physically unable and legally forbidden to stray very far from home. My solution to this problem was to invent a cocktail.

The restriction I placed on myself - because being limited to ingredients I already had on hand wasn't enough of one - was that each component of the drink had to be specifically connected, somehow, to my experience of this storm.

Last night, on my way home, I stopped into a liquor store to stock up. Item one on my agenda was dark rum, since I'd killed my previous bottle over the weekend, and there's really nothing better than a rich dark rum when it's snowing. (This is also true when it isn't snowing, but it's less obvious then.)

Item two, chiefly because the store happened to have it and to have it very visible, was a bottle of Meletti, an amaro I enjoy very much but had never previously purchased for myself. If not for the storm, I wouldn't have gotten either it or the rum last night; both went into the drink.

In my fridge, there is half a tired lemon, left over from pre-blizzard experiments. I have no other lemons or limes. Until the snow stops and the stores reopen, all the citrus I consume will come from that half lemon. A small portion of it went into the drink.

Finally, a cocktail themed after this specific storm would hardly be complete without a piece of this specific storm, by which I mean snow.

Those little droplets on the sides? That's snow. I opened my window, stuck my hand outside, and allowed Mother Nature to deliver unto the cocktail its final and signature ingredient. It needed a touch of water anyway.

And thus, as Frankenstein's monster from a lightning bolt, was born the Twenty-Four Nineteen.

1 oz. Rhum Barbancourt
1/4 oz. Amaro Meletti
4 drops lemon juice squeezed out of a tired old half-lemon by hand
1 rough-cut twist from the same tired old half-lemon, used to rim the glass and then dropped in
As much snow as you can capture in the otherwise-finished cocktail by thrusting it out into the elements until it becomes necessary to close the window

If you thought I was kidding, oh, how wrong you were.

If you thought I was kidding, oh, how wrong you were.

Rich, warm, and spicy - that sums it up well. It's nicely brightened by the citrus, and would do well as an aperi- or digestif, although its highest use is without a doubt as a winter warming drink.

Whether the snow actually contributed anything beyond the psychological satisfaction of having collected it by hand, I can't tell. But then, what could it possibly provide that's greater than that?

The things I used my last bottle of dark rum and the first half of that lemon for will be the subjects of future posts; Meletti will get one of its own, too, since I imagine a lot of you have never had it before. In the mean time, stay warm and dry. And don't try harvesting cocktail snow at home.