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I drank gin by accident

Posted August 28, 2013 into Food & Drink by John Birmingham

And it was all right. This is a remarkable thing for me to write because I have always imagined I hated gin after slamming down a glass which I thought to be water on the deck of the student club at UQ about thirty years ago.

A flat, warm glass of gin undoubtedly contaminated with somebody's backwash.

I have never gone back there again. Even the smell of it was enough to lock up my throat. I made the same mistake a few weeks ago in Sydney, but a happier mistake this time. A glass of 'water' which I sipped and realised with a slight shock was not water.

But it was properly chilled Tanqueray, served on ice before dinner at Monopole, and I had but a sip, which led to another sip and eventually to another glass. A lucky thing really, because dinner was being shouted by Tanqueray as sponsors of the Eat-Drink-Design Awards; the reason I was in town.

The food was awesome and the company outstanding. You forget sometimes on Planet Parenthood how much fun you can have at a table full of strangers with whom you might share only one or two interests beyond the usual round of conversation about school and kids and driving kids to school and things kids do before and after school. My fellow diners and judges were even kind enough to organize a little birthday treat for me which I noted at the time put them streets ahead of anyone here.

The standout memory, besides the pork ribs pictured left, was the gin and tonic I drank, first unwittingly and then enthusiastically. Makes me wonder I perhaps it's time to settle my differences with my old foe tequila as well.

45 Responses to ‘I drank gin by accident’

ali ducks in to say...

Posted August 28, 2013

As long as you don't go all silly and add Southern Comfort to that list... You KNOW it only goes with Coke..

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted August 28, 2013

Ah Southern Comfort, thereby hangs a tale.

Murphy puts forth...

Posted August 28, 2013

Not much comfort to be found in that bottle.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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BigWillieStyle would have you know...

Posted August 28, 2013

This reminds me of my own unfinished business with rum and bourbon. I got horribly, horribly drunk on UDL's containing same at a NYE party when I was 17. I've never experienced another hangover like it. Ever since, just the whiff of either spirit makes me gag.

But, now that I think of it, perhaps it wasn't actually the rum or bourbon, but the cheap cola that was the problem. Hmmmm. I should investigate this further. Can I apply for some sort of Federal grant for this? PM-in-waiting Abbott seems to chucking the cash around at the minute.

John Birmingham asserts...

Posted August 28, 2013

There is a Rum bar at the old Breakfast Creek Hotel that boasts 300+ varieties, including some that tip into your glass at a thousand bucks a nip. I'm sure we could find something suitable.

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sithwit mumbles...

Posted August 28, 2013

when the title of this article came up in my RSS I was expecting a drunken political rant. Aw well. maybe next time

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Barnesm would have you know...

Posted August 28, 2013

"I noted at the time put them streets ahead of anyone here.......

mmm revenge is a dish best served with ribs methinks.

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AuntyLou has opinions thus...

Posted August 28, 2013

I recently drank neat gin over ice...about half a tumbler full! I have always been a little partial to a 'mother's ruin' & tonic, but was convinced by another to try some Hendricks. What a revelation! Soft, floral, with a hint of tang. Beautiful! Ok...unlike the owner of the bottle, I couldn't continue to drink glass after glass of the stuff but it was definitely worth the exercise. Will probably give it a go with the Bombay Sapphire that is languishing in the grog cupboard (unless hubby finished it & is too scared to tell me).

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan would have you know...

Posted August 28, 2013

I once very much enjoyed cognac. Good cognac. Then I inadvertently drank a very large amount of really good cognc and things did not end well. I've haven't had a drop of the stuff ever since. It wasn't planned. I didn't stop drinking it as a form of penance; I just can't drink it now. And probably never will.

Lulu is gonna tell you...

Posted August 28, 2013

I misread that as 'cocaine'. Which could also make sense.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted August 28, 2013

I don't do that anymore as well, but for different reasons.

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Quokka would have you know...

Posted August 28, 2013

When I were a lass studying in the wilds of FNQ, a gay friend introduced me to a drink which made Townsville on a Friday night seem like a ripplingly fun place to be. He called it a 'Dirty MotherFKR' and the contents required equal parts of 4 white spirits and a splash of orange juice in a 10 oz glass.

I can only remember three of the spirits so clearly the fourth caused enough brain damage to scar me forever.

The spirits that I do recall were tequila, gin and vodka & vodka is the only one I can still bear to imbibe. And that, very occasionally.

The Stokehouse down at South Bank do a rippingly good cocktail with pink grapefruit juice & some other bitter stuff which I can't recall. Might be campari, might be gin. Worth infestigating if you mob are down that way.

The chips are a miracle of culinary delight, so a bowl of chippies and a pink cocktail is a marvellous way to make an afternoon disappear.

John Birmingham reckons...

Posted August 28, 2013

You know, they do more than chips.

Quokka would have you know...

Posted August 28, 2013

I know.

I took a girlfriend down there & without looking too closely at the menu (OK so we both forgot our reading glasses) we ordered the vegetarian platter to share. A tray of deep fried battered *things* arrived & we looked at it, aghast.

She said 'What is that? Is that a lobster?' & I said 'Not sure but the thing beside it looks like a Dagwood Dog.'

The waiter curled his lip and spun on his heels and left us so I'm not sure we'll be welcomed back.

It's a fabulous venue, though. Try the grease. It's good.

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted August 28, 2013

It sounds like you turned up your snouts at a tempura vegetable plate, you fucking heathens.

FormerlyKnownAsSimon mutters...

Posted August 28, 2013

Was 'infestigating' on purpose? If so, i like it. If not, i still like it. Do you mind if i add this to my vocabulary? Infestigating (verb): to carry out a systematic inquiry of a venue with a large and raucous crowd or in small groups resulting in workers of said venue turning up their nose as if seeing something unpleasant (cf. cockroach)

Quokka has opinions thus...

Posted August 28, 2013

Well, the ipad recognised Infestigate as a legitimate description for what we did so I assume this is the correct term for turning up to one of JB's favourite haunts and sneering when a battered sav comes out. Sure it may have Sanitarium stamped on it's ass but hey, the optometrist took 3D pix of my eyeball last week and said that I've got the vascular system of someone who's 20 years younger. So, M'seur, I fart in your general direction, and can only regret that its not redolent of river lard and sulphur gas.

NBlob puts forth...

Posted August 28, 2013

He he. Schooled, old school style.

AuntyQ 1, JB nil.

Darth Greybeard would have you know...

Posted August 28, 2013

"I've got the vascular system of someone who's 20 years younger." Presumably someone who annoyed you and as a consequence now lacks a vascular system? Bins on the street again was it?

John Birmingham would have you know...

Posted August 29, 2013

20 years younger in cat years.

Quokka ducks in to say...

Posted August 29, 2013

Pfft. Lets see you go off to the optometrist for 3D pix of your eyeball, and we'll see what your Cave Man Diet is doing to your innards.

Apparently those images are an accurate predictor of the state of your cardiovascular health and risk of heart-attack.

Just think of all the little plaques your body is manufacturing on your all protein Cave Man Diet.

So, show us your eyeballs.

I am betting they are bleary.

NBlob asserts...

Posted August 29, 2013

She could compare them to the eye of newt she keeps in the pantry.

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dewpoint mutters...

Posted August 28, 2013

Have to agree with AuntyLou on the delights of Hendricks. This is a very special gin that should never be contaminated with tonic. I love a gin and tonic but you can use any old gin with that, in just the same way you would never add the horror of coke a cola to a great whiskey, or dare I say even a southern comfort. Ideally Hendricks should be served on uncomtaminated ice with a slice of cucumber and perhaps a tiny small rosé bud but never an olive. I am certainly a fan of the dirty martini, with Tanqueney or Bombay even Gordon's but Henricks is totally ruined with an olive.

oh and happy birthday

Anthony mutters...

Posted August 28, 2013

Agree about the tonic - however a slice of lime offsets it perfectly.

Plymouth Gin is the best to have with tonic.

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TC puts forth...

Posted August 28, 2013

Two of my pet drinking loves are gin and tequila (generally separate but not always). I drank cheap gin as a youngster for a dare and was convinced for far too many years that it had the taste and aroma of Pine-o-Cleen. Finally got on board and have been a fan for many, many summers

There's something about a gin and tonic over ice, sitting in the afternoon sun wondering why you don't take the time to just relax more often. But then again... maybe it's the setting moreso than the drink...

SZF reckons...

Posted August 28, 2013

I'm with you, TC - though I'd also add good rum to my mix of pet spirits.

Tumbler full of ice, double of decent gin, dash of dry vermouth and a tiny squeeze of lime. Mind you, they're deadly as an elephant in slippers after more than a couple.

Was in Singapore last year and a more traditional variation (from the Brits perhaps?) is gin on ice, dash of lime and slice of cucumber. Also excellent.

JB, If you ever bury the hatchet with tequila and are down in Melbourne, try Touche Hombre in the CBD. A3 size tequila menu, listed by region, split by blend. Only been there once myself, being from Sydney, but the head bartender there really knows his agave (lovely American gent, ink down both arms, for some reason I can't recall his name...). Anyway, bottom line: f*ck Disnleyland, it's the happiest place on earth.

John Birmingham mutters...

Posted August 28, 2013

By odd coincidence we gave Touche Hombre a looking over for Eat-Drink-Design.

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Flinthart puts forth...

Posted August 28, 2013

Didn't know you avoided gin. Let me know if you want to pursue this further, by the way. Lark Distillery's Pepperberry Gin is just about the finest thing ever put into a bottle, and I will happily heave some in your direction.

Tequila, though... no. I think the range war must continue.

John Birmingham mutters...

Posted August 28, 2013

You may well have been there that fatal day at the Student Rec Club. But then I suppose the image of me throwing down someone's abandoned drink only to hurl it up immediately would not qualify as being unusual enough to remember.

Barnesm asserts...

Posted August 28, 2013

Might I add anything I have so far sampled from Lark's Distillery has been brilliant. Their single barrel whisky is a magnificent bastard much like yourself Flinthart.

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Murphy puts forth...

Posted August 28, 2013

Scotch.

Can't have scotch at all. In fact, I've been reliably informed by the Woman I Love that if she learns that I've consumed it again, she'll leave me.

Bushmills, on the other hand, is okay.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Rhino asserts...

Posted August 28, 2013

Welcome back :::sniff:::: welcome back.

<Rhino raising a mug of Sapphire and tonic to a prodigal child>

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w from brisbane would have you know...

Posted August 28, 2013

I forget how nice gin is. Then circumstamces lead me to having a gin (Tanqueray or Bombay Sapphire) and tonic with a slice of lime on a summer's late afternoon and I am joltingly reminded that it is the most wonderful beverage that there can possibly be under those circumstances. A gin squash if you feel like a little more sugar.
Both are delicious, civilised and civilising. Wonderful!

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Brother PorkChop is gonna tell you...

Posted August 28, 2013

Tequila for me was always the awful after effects of salmmers and shots of Tio Pepe. My neice however has converted me to her way of thinking and drinking with Agavero Tequila Liqueur. OMG, it's awesome!! It goes either way - sip or shot. The best way I have had it was with a wedge of blood orange, aboslutely liberally covered in cinnamon powder eaten post shot. It was like a foodie, flavour party bomb WMD going off in your gob.

I like G&Ts as well. And on a hot summers day, a fruity jug of Pimms and lemonade. And in Fiji, one would always partake in Bacardi, lime and soda.

Now I am thirsty and its only 3.15PM with a Prep Fathers Day event on this eveing. Thanks.

dewpoint has opinions thus...

Posted August 28, 2013

BPC that tequila blood orange cinnamon is gonna be my first drink when I get off the wagon

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Sekret Sekret has opinions thus...

Posted August 28, 2013

Tequila -you sit down to drink it one one planet and stand up on another.

Gin- at my late grandfather's pub in Surry Hills in the seventies there was a ladies lounge and Gin was the drink-- every--' du jour'. Gin & tonic served in middy glasses, shandies , fags and a pianola. The pub is still there but it's more like Brand Gin served in the good crystal. Funny how it all changes. Interesting topic, the social history of spirits.
The above convo brings it all back.

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sibeen reckons...

Posted August 28, 2013

A G&T is the only form of spirits I imbibe. One whilst sitting around the pool is a lovely start to an evening.

The smell of rum, whiskey, bourbon et al just make me want to hurl a little.

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Darth Greybeard is gonna tell you...

Posted August 28, 2013

I don't mind a Bombay Sapphire but it sits down the back behind the scotch. Somewhere further back in the spider-haunted darkness is a bottle of VSOP cognac which I think stands for Very Standard Ordinary Plonk. But what is this I hear? My dear one calls to ask if I want a Lagavulin. Byeee.

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Shell ducks in to say...

Posted August 28, 2013

J'adore a dry martini, shaken, not stirred.

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Guru Bob ducks in to say...

Posted August 29, 2013

JB For some reason the thought of you and tequila brings a smile to my face and a suppressed laugh? Must be a subconscious thing....

belated birthday wishes, but now i don't have Facebook to tell me the date I missed it. Next time you are in sunny Melbourne we can try and find a suitable mexican venue?

G&T made great sense up in the tropics!

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 29, 2013

I saw one Mexican restaurant in Melbourne but was afraid to go in and order anything. There is a saying that the closer to Mexico, the better the Mexican food, and the farther from Mexico the less it is worth the effort - and I had never been further from Mexico in my life than I was in Oz.

Brother PorkChop is gonna tell you...

Posted August 29, 2013

Mama Sita has a great tequila selection, and some lovely food.

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alice mutters...

Posted August 29, 2013

You might consider trying this delicious gin-based concoction some time:

Generous shot of gin

Splash of Aperol

Top it up with prosecco

And if you're going to be super fancy, a slice of fresh blood orange.

John Birmingham swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 29, 2013

Whoa. You are my new favourite.

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Conspiracy Cat mumbles...

Posted August 29, 2013

After a particularly enjoyable cocktail party about 20 years ago, the only things left (apart from the gladwrap on the toilet bowl, the grenadine stains in the carpet, and a couple of body outlines on the kitchen floor) were 1/4 of a bottle of vermouth and an unopened bottle of gin. So I mixed them up and added an olive. Thus was my martini habit born.

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