mayqueen.jpgLeaving Employees Only one night, a friend asked, if we can't afford these drinks -- and don't go in expecting anyone to buy them for us -- why do we go to these places? It's not rhetoric. It is really expensive. And we don't like the people in the bars. We're our favourite lushes and we already know where we live.

We go to places we can't afford because the proprietors feel like we do, that a Thursday is often as important to celebrate as an engagement, that people can be alone together for the better, and, most of all, because they actually remember to buy yellow chartreuse and can make that obscure cocktail we crave. This week, because spring is here -- and we've already started playing hooky -- we're celebrating. Rites of spring, long before we learned that the Costume Insitute gala should be our arbiter, were based in the actual mythology of a new season. Referencing either Artemis or, more likely, Persephone who gave us spring, May Queens are crowned and chosen to lead parades on May Day (with or without referencing the rights of workers on that day). These girls used to be about thirteen, but like so many other terms this one's been reclaimed, here, in an anthology about facing a new time in women's lives in The May Queen. Referring to a Tennyson poem they give us a way to celebrate that we are very, very familiar with -- drinking. From their blog, a book tour and mishmash in the best possible way, 3 Things To Do Before 40:

The May Queen

A good, dry champagne
yellow chartreuse
brandy
armagnac
kummel
old stout

2/3 parts champagne (depending on exactly how celebratory you want to be) to each part of the other additions


Places like Little Branch and Pegu Club are perfect, as their skilled bartenders are happy to use everything they've got to make the most obscure cocktails or build another one.