February 1, 2011

Cocktail Talk, The Gutter and the Grave, Part 2

It’s hard to believe that there could be two more beautifully booze-y quotes from this Ed McBain book, quotes as good as those below, but I’m going to say, drink in hand raised to the sky, that these may be as good. At least, they manage to mention a whole array of classic mixes—and both mention the Zombie. Is there another book (outside of drink books, duh) that mentions the rum’d out Zombie twice? I have my doubts (but would be happy to be pointed in the direction of another one). Does this mean you should be sure to have rums on hand when you read the Gutter and the Grave? Well, of course.


It was Park Avenue mixed with the slums, it was cocktail parties and pool parlors, theater openings and all-night movies on Forty-Second Street. It was her world and mine, mixed like a Zombie, four thousand kinds of rum, but blended because underneath the exotic name it was all rum.


The man handling our table wondered back. ‘Sir, the bartender says he is not equipped to make hot rum toddies, sir. He suggests, if you care for rum, a Planter’s Punch, or a Cuba Libre, or a Zombie.’

‘I’ll have a rye and soda,’ I said. ‘Toni?’

‘A whiskey sour,’ she said.


The Gutter and the Grave, Ed McBain

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