Drink Up!

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Did you hear about “The Bartender’s Black Book” here in New Hampshire?

I didn’t think so.

It is quite a scandalous affair that some have tried to sweep under the cashier station.

It seems the state spent $3,000 (in reality, we all spent $3,000) to print a book that employees at state liquor stores could use to offer customers help in figuring out some great new drinks they might try and what goes in them.

Wait…don’t start laughing. That’s really not even the funny part yet.

Supposedly, a few of the names of the drinks were so offensive that some employees refused to read them to customers and complained to their management who in turn complained to higher ups who in turn complained to the governor who did what any responsible public official would do after they had just spent $3,000 of our money on a new, not very well thought out idea. She had all the books thrown out.


Okay, now you can start laughing, or crying, depending on how your day went.

Still, I don’t think that the idea itself should be thrown out. I believe that the state could produce another book (what’s a measly $3,000) of exciting cocktail ideas to help the befuddled casual imbiber choose between the newest Russian Vodka in the eye-catching floor display or the overstocked Caribbean spiced rum with the $5 off coupon.

This time it wouldn’t be embarrassing names that are hard to repeat, but drink names that are related to New Hampshire both past and present. This way we can not only sell liquor but educate people as well. Maybe even bring in some new customers who are just showing up to learn a few things.

Here are a few of my ideas for drink names. I haven’t figured out yet what will go in all of them.

The Drink Less Sipped – I’m thinking this might be an expensive brandy of some sort. Possibly served in a “Frost”ed glass.

The Old Man and Mountain Dew – A great one for the younger generation giving them both a history lesson and another use for one of their favorite soft drinks.

The Kancamagus Highball – Two of these and you won’t be able to pronounce Kancamagus… Then again, you might not be able to even before you have one.

The New Hampshire House –This drink will change every two years and can be made from any combination of four hundred different types of liquors. The mixer used will be debatable.

The NH Senate – This will be pretty much the same as The New Hampshire House but the mixer will be changed, just to be different.

The Flatlander – This could be made with any new liquors that come on the market, though it is expected that it will be anywhere from six months to a year until natives will try it. (Still, no native will admit they like it no matter how good it tastes.)

The White Mountains – Not sure which liquor will be used, but I know it will be a cream drink.

First In The Nation –This drink will change every four years as liquor companies will lobby long and hard across the state to have their product included. The final recipe will not be pleasing to everyone.

On the wine front, I was thinking that maybe the folks at the State Liquor Stores could use this opportunity to increase lottery ticket sales as well, perhaps suggesting different tickets to go along with different wines.

“I see you have chosen the Pinot Noir. May I suggest a ten-dollar ‘Big Buck Bonanza’ to go along with it? To get the full effect I would recommend using a dime instead of a quarter in scratching the ticket so as to have the illusion of winning last just a little longer, much like the lingering aroma of the Pinot.”

To promote this new approach, the Liquor Commission could get together with the Department of Travel and Tourism and spend some money to come up with a catchy slogan like “Live Free and Drink, Drink, Drink Responsibly.”

Do you have an idea for a drink name using something to do with New Hampshire? Send it along to me including what might be in it and other details. I will then take them all and put them in a booklet and present it to the powers that be at the NH Liquor Commission who will, in turn, not even consider it because it wasn’t their idea.

You can also follow Brendan’s blog at www.foolinnh.com.