Sunday, February 19, 2017

Final Mixology Monday CXVI: Irish Wake

Mixology Monday was one of the exciting regular events that got me into creating this blog in the first place.  In my opinion, its monthly themes have always been sharp enough to spur inspiration and creativity to share new ideas and spread already-established ones.

MxMo was created by our mixological forefather Paul Clarke, who passed the torch to the eminent Frederic Yarm who, if nothing else, is the most prolific cocktail blogger/author on the internet.  Fred has decided to let MxMo die this organic death, for which he provides his own reasons.

Appropriately, the theme for this final event is in the spirit of an Irish Wake.  I've navigated this broad theme by deciding to write about a time that alcohol has helped me mourn, at Fred's suggestion.

I want to firstly thank Paul and Fred for being stewards of this pillar of modern mixology's presence on the internet.  Its existence was formative on the way I think about and make drinks, and has been from the beginning. (Let's just say that I wasn't even 21 years old when MxMo started.)  As Fred details in the link above, maintaining MxMo was never easy, but his and Paul's work has not gone unappreciated over the years.

In the autumn of 2015 a cousin of mine came to our house with a family friend in order to catch up and have drinks and dinner.  As my dear DJ HawaiianSkirt isn't a big drinker, I often relish the opportunity to use my considerable bar to entertain and, especially, to test new recipes.

My cousin had recently moved to the area and so I wasn't used to seeing her often.  Shortly after our guests' arrival, a topic that quickly arose was the health of our grandmother, as she had been a victim of severe dementia for the last few years and seemed to have recently entered a final spiral.

Moments afterward, I received a text from my father letting me know that our grandmother had passed away minutes ago.  We looked at each other for a moment in silence.  As both of our phones began blowing up over the next few minutes, an ironic thought came to my mind: after living lifetimes apart from each other, our grandmother's only two grandchildren were together thinking about her and talking about her at the very moment of her passing.

After things calmed down, we all wondered if we should continue our evening as planned, or if we were even up for it.  Brief deliberation concluded our grandmother would have wanted us to drink and be merry, and so that's what we did.

What were we drinking that night, you ask?  I don't remember everything, but two things that I do were our "house drink" the Hwalisa, and some tonics mixed with my homemade gin.

Thanks again to Paul and Fred for this august tradition.  May its spirit remain in its absence.