Tuesday, December 1, 2015

5 Drinks to Replace Caesars as Canada's Cocktail

It's no secret that I think Caesars are over rated. While I can appreciate Caesars during a certain time and place (read: hangovers), I believe that they should be relegated to one particular day of the week (Sundays). I've said it before and I'll say it again; Canadian cocktail culture needs an overhaul. Caesars are by and large the only cocktail that an average Canadian knows (you can guess my opinion about whether hi-balls  or Screwdrivers should be included as cocktails....) So I've put together a short list of cocktails to replace the Caesar as Canada's cocktail.

5. The Toronto

How many Toronto's does it take to run the country?
Just one.
Why it would work: If San Francisco can develop a hard on for Fernet, so can Canada. It's really the perfect cocktail for this list. It calls for rye, which is Canada's way of distilling whisky, and which once put Canada on the map for quality alcohol production. It's named after Canada's largest city, which many identify as the cultural hub of Canada. It would add a well needed level of class and worldliness to Canadian culture; we need to nix the country bumkin identity and move on up in the world.

Why it wouldn't work: To be honest, I would love to give this cocktail the number one spot. Sadly, most Canadians don't like to feel connected with Toronto. Canadians are jealous of Toronto. I know us non Torontonians hate to admit it, but Toronto is better than us, because they either don't know of don't care about everyone's extreme hatred of their city. It all stems from the fact that the Toronto Maple Leafs are the most popular hockey team in the NHL, and Canadians have nothing better to complain about than one way hockey rivalries.

 4. The Manhattan
You might recognize this cocktail from the old mustached
grandpa that comes customary with each order.
Why it would work: Canadians love the big apple almost as much as they don't love the big smoke. Seriously, this cocktail could do it for almost all the same reasons as the Toronto. It's made with rye, it's classy, and it's named after a city everyone loves. Better yet, it's not as esoteric as the Toronto, so whether the bartenders knows what it is or not, the ingredients should at least be available in most bars.

Why it wouldn't work: The most important thing to know about Canadian heritage is that our national identity is built around the concept of not being American. We may love New York, and love to drink Manhattans, but by default we hate to be thought of as Americans. And what's more American than America's largest city?! Well, I suppose the flag, or white house, but you can't drink those....

3. Dark 'N Stormy

Possibly the best thing you can do with alcohol free ginger beer,
is add rum to it!
Why it would work: Even though rye is our historical claim, there's a whole part of the country who drinks only rum and beer. Atlantic Canada is where I was born and raised, and it's a well known fact that Easterners like their rum. It also wouldn't be that hard to switch to, given the fact that hi-balls are already so prominent a thing in bars here.

Why it wouldn't work: Okay, so the point of the list is to add more sophistication to our drinking culture. The last thing Canadians need is another go to hi-ball. And aside from that, no one wants to be associated with quirky Easterners. The maritimes is the butt hole of Canada,and no Newfies are weird. Look at their rum! It's even got a weird name.... Screech!

2. Irish Coffee

Note: This is not a double double. It's all Irish baby!
Why it would work: Canadians love their coffee. Think about it. You can easily sneak some Irish whiskey into your double double from Tim Hortons each day, then go about your day with a light buzz and caffeine high. It would fuel a whole new generation of alcohol dependency, and at the same time stand in the face of the Anglo world's stupid ban of drinking alcohol in public.

Why it wouldn't work: Too many people use the drive through at Tim Hortons. Need I say more?

1. The Sidecar
(This drink is fantastic)
Why it would work: This one would be a huge play out of left field. First of all, it's fucking fantastic, just like Canada. Secondly, it has some shady French history behind it, just like Canada. And aside from all that, it has the class and pizzazz that I so desperately crave. I would have absolutely no problem with *people who opted for Sidecars all the time instead of Caesars.

Why it wouldn't work: Anglo Canadians by and large would never accept something so French. And that's pretty much what it comes down to.

Honorable Mention

Vanilla Porter and Canadian Rye makes a pretty damn good Boilermaker.
Over the years I've discovered that one of the ways to make terrible Canadian lagers and terrible Canadian whiskies work is to mix them together. It's simple, like so many Canadianisms,  and it doesn't fall victim to the cocktails above, which would never be accepted because of the intolerance of Anglo Canadians, to French Canadians. French Canadians to Anglo Canadians. Non Torontonians to Torontonians. And Canadians to Americans. Unfortunately, it's not a cocktail.
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