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Inspiration: The Corpse Reviver no.2

Posted by Betsy C on

If you are following along with the recent release of the Reviver Skirt then you know that this is the part where I bring my interest of mixology and craft cocktails to the sewing room. Just like a sewing project, the effort and attention you pay to the details along the way are what separates the meh from the WOW. You won’t find any jungle juice recipes here. I like to keep it classy and top notch.

I love a good vintage recipe, especially a nearly forgotten one. The Corpse Reviver no.2 was at it’s height in popularity in the 1930’s and was included in the famous Savoy Cocktail book. It is intended to be a cure for over indulgence from the night before;  a hair-of-the-dog type of drink. It is light and refreshing with the lemon and Lillet. But the splash of absinthe adds a bit of intrigue.

Now a disclaimer for anyone freaked out about absinthe. Perhaps you goggled it and found out that it made Vincent Van Gogh cut off his own ear and causes hallucinations. Basically there is a lot mystery surrounding it and is thought to be dangerous. Modern day absinthe (at least not available for retail purchase) lacks the hallucinatory side effects because of a little thing called regulations. It it potent? Hell yeah!

I thought I was not a fan of absinthe after I was once served some cheap stuff at a party. I am not a black licorice fan, which is the primary flavor. However, after trying the Corpse Reviver No. 2, at a classy joint, I wanted desperately to duplicate my own where the absinthe blends in to create a whole new flavor. Never one to skimp, I purchased a relatively expensive bottle that came highly recommended and 62% alcohol by volume.  Come friday night I am standing in the kitchen with my spoils and my mister on the couch oblivious to what I am up to. I want to try out the ingredients individually before the mix begins. Lillet- ok, just a sweet dessert wine. Gin, been there, done that. Next up absinthe. Not knowing its strength I pour only a teaspoon into my shot glass, toss it back and swish it around to discern the flavors. I feel like I am in a scene from Backdraft. Fire, fire and burning! I am afraid to swallow as who knows what this will mean for my esophagus and digestive tract. I am flapping my hands and making loud whimpers. Mister jumps off the couch to try to aid me as he believes I seriously injured myself. I rush to the sink and spray it back out. Classy, huh? The burning persisted for a good few minutes and so did my heart racing. Never one to back down, I ever so gently dropped just a splash in to make the cocktail (I don’t think i have ever been so hesitant with just a splash of anything before). But i am glad I did and came to the conclusion that absinthe is good in tiny quantities, watered down (which the bottle suggests to do, but who reads directions on a bottle of booze?).

 All fears aside, give it a try. Oh, and if anyone has other absinthe recipe suggestions please share as my bottle will be around for a long time at the rate of dashes I am going.


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