For Whom the Bell Bols*

My first panel of Tales 2k8 was also among the discussions I most eagerly awaited. I am not what you might call a dedicated Hemingway fan, but I’ve read many of his books and they never fail to entertain me. Now that I am also a drinks nerd, I like reading them with a barfly’s eye.

Led by Phil Greene, cofounder of the Museum of the American Cocktail and Hemingway enthusiast, we romped through passages from Papa’s novels, short stories, and letters, and tasted some of the giant’s favorite cocktails.

We began with the Jack Rose, and may I say, this was the finest version I’ve had of this drink. I suspect the Fee Bros.’ grenadine played a role in that, and I should order a bottle when I return home.

Jack Rose

Next, was the Green Isaac’s Special, a drink that Hemingway himself invented and named after a Caribbean island:

Um, no, it's not green. Nor it is supposed to be.

To break from the red drinks, we had a Montgomery martini. If I remember Phil’s story correctly, it’s named such because British field marshal Montgomery was said to avoid leading his men to battle unless they enjoyed a 15 to 1 advantage. Hemingway mixed his martinis to that ratio, and, thus, the Montgomery Martini:


Next, the Papa Doble Daiquiri; his love of the daiquiri is legendary, so I’ll say no more:

Papa Doble

Finally, the Death in the Afternoon. This apparently originated in a recipe that Hemingway submitted to a book (So Red the Nose, or Breath in the Afternoon) collecting the tipples of famous writers and actors. A fine drink:

Death in the morning before the afternoon

*N.B.: Bols played no part in this. Don’t blame them for the pun.


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