Living as a Mod in the 21st Century

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Cocktail Corner: Drinks for the sophisticated Mod

To all my fellow Mods and Modettes, Rude Boys and Rude Girls and all lovers of finer things in life, I introduce to you The Cocktail Corner.

If the history of Mods teaches us one thing is that we love to live La Dolce Vita. Everything we do, we do with style. It transcends in the way we dress, the music we listen to and our mode of transportation. Let’s face it, we have class! Our sophistication relates to the times when women were treated like ladies, men wore hats and a deal was made on a handshake.

This is why I chose to write about a social aspect that we sometimes take for granted: the drinking. When I have a drink, it’s a ritual I don’t take lightly. You can ask my friends, they’ll concur. I usually put a lot of thought in my choice of libation.

Our first lesson will be in the fine art of mixing the perfect Martini. I chose this classic cocktail because of the image it conjures in my mind. A dark club, dressed in my finest 3 button suit, handkerchief in my pocket, one inch tie well straightened, shinny tasseled loafers, neatly cut  hair, pork pie hat slightly tilted, one eyebrow raised, one elbow resting on the bar, my lips delicately sipping an ice-cold Martini while casually listening to the likes of Mose Allison.

I also think of my favorite invincible spy, James Bond. It’s no wonder a lot of Mods and Rude Boys are intrigued with ultra suave secret agents. They have charm, sophistication, this magnetic je ne sais quoi and… they know how to order a drink.

This extract from Ian Fleming’s Casino Royal will convince anybody.
'A dry martini,' he said. 'One. In a deep champagne goblet.'

'Oui, monsieur.'

'Just a moment. Three measures of Gordon's, one of vodka, half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it very well until it's ice-cold, then add a large thin slice of lemon peel. Got it?'

'Certainly monsieur.' The barman seemed pleased with the idea.

'Gosh, that's certainly a drink,' said Leiter.

Bond laughed. 'When I',' he explained, 'I never have more than one drink before dinner. But I do like that one to be large and very strong and very cold, and very well-made. I hate small portions of anything, particularly when they taste bad. This drink's my own invention. I'm going to patent it when I think of a good name.'

Well all you hepcats out there, doesn’t that put your taste buds in overdrive? Get your shaker out, drop the needle on your favorite soul tune and prepare yourself to mix the ultimate cocktail. Here’s a selection of my favorite Martini recipes.
 Everything you need for the perfect evening

"When pouring Martinis, make sure they are filled dangerously close to the brim."
Joe McQuirk, bartender

The classic Martini:

Pour 2 ounces of London dry gin, 1 ounce of French vermouth and a dash of orange bitters into an ice-filled shaker. Shake then pour in a well-chilled glass and garnish with lemon peel or olive. This is the way the Martini was done before the Prohibition.

Orange bitters is not easy to find so I usually replace it with your widely available Angostura bitters.


The modern dry Martini:

Pour 4 ounces of gin and ½ ounce of dry vermouth into an ice-filled shaker. Shake then strain into a glass. Garnish with a lemon twist or olive. A pearl onion makes the drink a Gibson.

 The James Bond Martini:

Bond named the drink The Vesper (do not mistake with the Vespa!) for a beautiful double agent he loved. The recipe is 3 ounces of gin, 1 ounce of vodka, ½ of blond Lillet and a large thin slice of lemon peel. Pour the liquid ingredients into an ice-filled shaker, shake and strain into a Martini glass. Add the lemon peel and keep your eyes open for enemy agents.

 The Cajun Martini:

Pour a fifth of you favorite gin or vodka into a large jug, jar or bottle. Add 2 or 3 fresh jalapeno peppers (sliced, seeded and deveined) and a single chili pepper (don’t over do it!). Let sit in refrigerator for 2 days. Shake with ice and vermouth in a 5 to 1 ratio. Serve straight up or on the rocks. For the wimps out there, if it’s too hot, dilute with more gin or vodka. I sometimes use the spicy vodka in a Bloody Caesar and my girlfriend loves it!

Now that you possess the knowledge, impress your friends but please, do not allow children to mix drinks. It’s unseemly and they usually use too much vermouth.

 If this is not meant for Mods, I don't know what is.

"If you drink, don’t drive. Don’t even putt."

Dean Martin


  1. Oh how I wish you lived on my street. I'd be over for a nightly martini ritual.

  2. It's funny you say that, I was going to suggest the exact same thing. Great "spirits" think alike.