Concocting the cocktail


Moliere's Muddle poster with white background jpeg


Olympic Theatre Arts in Sequim has a darling little tradition of offering a “specialty drink” during each of its shows. This drink is intended to fit somehow with the theme of the show. It’s a fun way to make the show a little more memorable, as well as generating sales to benefit this wonderful non-profit community theatre.


In another I-have-no-idea-what-possessed-me moment, I volunteered to come up with the specialty drink for OTA’s summer show, Scapino! For some reason I decided at the outset to concoct an original cocktail, something I had never done before. I did quite a bit of reading about how to combine acidic things with sweeter things, counteracting one thing with another, and like that. (I know, I know.) Information overload for sure.


Then I looked at the Wikipedia page about Scapino, since I knew basically nothing about the show and thought it might help me get some idea for the drink ingredients. Scapino is a comedy set in Italy, and based on a play by Moliere. So right away I was thinking of how I could use both French and Italian ingredients. (Seriously, I don’t know what possessed me.) Also, Scapino seems to be a character known for making confusion out of just about everything; hence, Moliere’s Muddle.


Anyway, it actually didn’t take all that long to decide. I’d never used Campari before, although I knew vaguely that it was a famous Italian liqueur; you know, one of those things that have a long list of super-secret ingredients that leave you wondering which of them is responsible for the bright red color… for the French element I chose Lillet Rouge, a wine-based aperitif. I’m not sure why I decided on adding my homemade ginger liqueur but it seemed to me that the relative sweetness of the liqueur nicely offsets the bitter edge to the Campari. Plus, I just like ginger liqueur.


Considering the show is happening in July, when the weather can be expected to be warm, I was trying for something not  too high in alcohol and definitely not too sweet. Interesting challenge to have it be fairly fruity without being overly sweet, but the Campari balances that out nicely.


A week ago I made samples for the OTA office staff, and received an all-around thumb’s-up. So naturally I went and volunteered to be in charge of the specialty drinks for all 8 shows in OTA’s upcoming season. Hey, you never know, if I can keep coming up with interesting drink recipes, my publisher might just want to print a new edition of Craft Distilling!


In the meantime, the poster above lists all the ingredients in Moliere’s Muddle. Do come see the show and try one (or several) cocktails. Scapino opens this Friday, July 8, with a preview show on Thursday. More details are on the OTA website, or you can phone the office at (360) 683-7326.

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