Tuesday, October 14, 2008

MxMo 32: Guilty Pleasures


TV and movies must be trying to tell me something . This is the second consecutive post where something I drink is linked with a film or show. Much like Mad Men (which I referenced in my previous post), the movie The Big Lebowski has an alcoholic component- specifically, one drink: The White Russian.

Now I’m sure you’re thinking, “But Dr. B., White Russians are made with vodka, and don’t booze nerds universally loathe vodka??”

Normally I would respond with an unequivocal “yes”, but something tells me this month’s theme will have more than one self-professed drink snob sheepishly admitting that vodka does periodically cross his or her lips. Busted!


Briefly back to The Big Lebowski: I’ve discovered in the course of entirely unscientific testing that The Big Lebowski falls in the category of things people either love irrationally or despise (another parallel with Mad Men, by the way). Actually, now that I think about it, this applies to the entire Coen Brothers’ body of work. (The Bamboo Babe and I have had epic arguments over the merits of Barton Fink, for example).

But concerning the White Russian, I’d wager that Lebowski did more to increase the profile of the White Russian than anything in recent memory (my memory, anyway). I don’t think there was any formal product-placement shenanigans at work in the film, but regardless, the folks who make Kahlua owe the Coens big-time. Vodka companies should probably thank them too, but they’re likely too busy figuring out new wacky marketing schemes to steal the spotlight from Dan Aykroyd’s “filtered-through-diamonds-and packaged-in-a-skull-shaped-bottle” product.

On the guilty pleasure angle, I honestly don’t remember the first time I had one. I may not have immediately liked it, but something kept it on my radar. Maybe it was the ease of assembly. Perhaps the accessible ingredients. Maybe it’s just that it doesn’t taste half bad if you make it right. Personally, I find this recipe to my liking:

White Russian

2 oz. vodka
1 oz. Kahlua
cream (or half & half, or whatever similar dairy product you find palatable)

In an old-fashioned glass filled with ice cubes, add vodka, Kahlua and cream to fill. Stir if you feel like it.

I should point out that I already take a decent ration of abuse from some of my colleagues for confessing that I occasionally drink vodka. Obviously, this post won’t help. But I can withstand whatever they level at me.

As long as they don’t take my rug.

UPDATE- I was just alerted to the fact that Vidiot over at Cocktailians proves that great minds drink alike.

UPDATE Part 2: The Revenge- The roundup has arrived, so go swing by Two at the Most and witness the collective shame. You're soaking in it!


Colonel Tiki said...

It really tied the room together, did it not?

Anita (Married... with dinner) said...

I am so glad that you and Vidiot both copped to being closet White Russian drinkers -- and Urban Achievers, too! -- so that I don't have to live with the shame alone. It was a long few months since that cream-themed MxMo when I confessed, but I feel vindicated at last!

Unknown said...

I like yer style, Dude.

Anonymous said...

That used to be my favorite dessert drink until Jeff Berry came along and I made my first Rum Cow. The name is rather less catchy though.

Tikimama said...

There's a beverage here, man!

I desperately need a poster of that Dude picture.

Unknown said...

The Dude graphic is most definitely ace.

~Sonja~ said...

Thanks to you and Vidiot, I know what I'm going to be trying tonight. Hopefully it won't be another thing on my list of things I shouldn't like (but it probably will). And great artwork, as always!

Tiare said...

I`m only half ashamed of my blue drinks because i have just remembered that i have another guilty pleasure which is much worse.

Great drawing!

Kelsey Crenshaw said...

I love vodka and am not ashamed. Just because it is so dominant these days and not trendy and unavailable... It is so easy to mix. I like to try to make drinks with vodka that have flavor of vodka. I think your white russian recipe does this correctly and does not taste like it's a drink for people who hate the taste of alcohol.

Dr. Bamboo said...

Craig- Indeed!

Anita- Drinking White Russians needn't be shameful..it's a natural, zesty enterprise.

Vidiot- Thanks...Right back atcha!

Nathan- I've never had a Rum Cow...I'll be fixing one pronto.

Heather- I'll see what I can do...

Sonja- Thanks! Bump it to the top of your list!

Tiare- Thanks! And there's *always* something worse. ;-)

Kelsey- Right on. You gotta be able to tell you're drinking a "drink"! Otherwise it's just candy in a glass.

KL said...

I bartended at a bowling alley when I started. Much love for the White Russian.

emr said...

where where where and how could i get a poster of this? i have gone as the dude at lebowskifest and would love a hard copy. it is great !

Dr. Bamboo said...

Erin- please email me at:

mrusek (at) comcast.net

...and we'll get something worked out. Thanks!

Matthew Rowley said...

Although over at the Whiskey Forge, we tend to eschew vodka, I was knocked back not long ago to realize, on reogranizing the liquor closets, that we had no fewer than ten bottles of different vodkas squirreled away. That's about eight more than I suspected—the bulk of which are undoubtedly gifts from well-intentioned guests.

But the one-liter bottle of Absolut? I bought that myself, along with a one-liter bottle of Kahlua, during regular cross-border trips to Mexico. Hard to argue with a duty-free $10 each.

This has to be in part the reason I woke mildly hung over one morning not long ago, staggered out of bed, bleared into the mirror, and inquired, with no prompting or seeming connection to anything I'd been dreaming, "Donde es el dinero, Lebowski?"

I attribute it to the Mexican Absolut while my brain warmed up and am relieved I didn't pee on the rug instead.

Anonymous said...

I love absinthe and I am not ashamed