Virtually all major alcohol manufacturers have some form of responsible drinking campaign. It is good corporate citizenship and better politics. One of mega-distiller Bacardi’s efforts in this vein is Champions Drink Responsibly.
In conjunction with this year’s US Open (Tennis, of course… though I understand there is one for Golf, or elevator repair, or some such as well), the new face of the program is Raphael Nadal.
I’m posting about this here for a couple of reasons. I want to say a few things about my own opinions on responsible drinking, and how to achieve it with the maximum enjoyment. I also love Tennis, even more than Baseball. And finally, well… Rule 5 isn’t just for guys…
Er, that’s his Armani shoot, right?
You’re welcome, ladies.
It may seem counter-intuitive to some, but I think that cocktails, especially classic cocktails, are the form of drinking best suited to moderation. Yes, I know, I’m talking about drinking hard liquor, Demon Rum, White Lightning, etc. But here are a few reasons that cocktails lend themselves to an evening’s enjoyment, as opposed to simply an evening’s drinking.
- Ease of application. The easier it is to move on to the next drink after finishing the last, the easier it is to go too far. Perhaps way too far. With beer, you simply pop another tab. With wine you simply refill your glass. With cocktails, you have to make another drink. With classic or craft cocktails, this is seldom a swift, thoughtless process.
- Choices. Beer and wine drinkers most often stick with the same thing all night long. Half the fun of cocktails is choosing what to have next. At a great bar, or at home, we sometimes agonize over what to try next. Thoughts and decisions take time, slow you down, and help pace your evening. Also, the discussion of your next drink in context with your previous choices helps you keep in mind how many choices you have already made….
- Strength. While it is true that cocktails often are stronger than a glass of beer or wine, it is also true that they almost always taste stronger. It is a lot easier to convince yourself as the evening goes on that you can handle one more Budweiser, than it is to do the same with a Manhattan. (Note, if you are drinking Zombies, this offer does not apply.)
You can still get in just as much trouble with Sazeracs as with Shiner Bocks, of course. But the attitude of a night of drinking one is different than a night of drinking the other. In either case, Rafa and Bacardi’s message holds: “A drink too many can ruin an evening. And several too many can ruin a carpet….” (I may have translated that inexactly. I don’t speak Spanish)
But seriously, it is US Open time so let’s say a few more words about Rafa. During the upcoming fortnight, New York, a legend will walk your streets. And so will Nadal… (Sorry Rafa, I’m a Fed guy. I couldn’t help myself.) In all seriousness, while I think there’s little doubt that Federer is the greatest tennis player ever, I think there’s just as little doubt that Nadal is the greatest athlete to ever play tennis. It’s a fine distinction. And it doesn’t change the fact that the only man alive today who could hope to beat either of them at their respective peaks would be the other of the two. Both are not just once-in-a-lifetime, but millennial talents, and all Sport is enriched by their talents and especially by the fact that their careers have overlapped.
If these guys should end up granting us one more meeting this September, turn off the damn football and watch what happens when real titans and giants clash.
Above, we see Nadal on a rooftop in New York earlier this week, enjoying a Bacardi-invented mocktail, the Rafa Berry Smash.
RAFA BERRY SMASH
- 6 fresh strawberries
- 4 fresh raspberries
- 4 fresh blueberries
- 10ml of fresh lemon juice
- 1 heaped spoon of caster sugar
- 50ml of cranberry juice
- 50ml of pomegranate juice
- Ice cubes and crushed ice
Slice the strawberries in quarters and then place all the fruit, sugar and lemon juice into a mixing glass. Muddle the ingredients, two presses is plenty so as to not overdo it. Add the cranberry juice, pomegranate juice and 6 – 8 large ice cubes to the mixing glass and shake hard for 7 seconds. Pour the shaken drink into a tall glass and top it off with crushed ice. Add two straws and a strawberry to complete the drink.
I am virtually certain that if you were to add about 50-60ml of a nice rum, say one from, oh I dunno know, Bacardi, this would also be a damn good not-so-mocktail….
Bacardi made a good choice in Rafa. Nadal is ridiculously and deservedly popular. Especially with female fans. Especially during change-overs if he needs to swap out for a fresh shirt on the sideline….
As with drinking, Raphael Nadal appears to believe in moderation with women as well. He’s apparently had the same girlfriend for at least three years now, which alone puts him 50 miles above most superstar athletes in the class department. I’ll admit, it’s a bit easier to exhibit such class when the lady in question keeps up with him in the looks department:
Finally, to cement this as the all-time most comprehensive Rule Five post here, for the ladies at least, enjoy this video version of the Armani picture above.(via Portable TV)