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Friday, April 17, 2009

Plantation Style Mint Julep

Zoom in on the scene: our heroine, Charlotte Junebug O'Languid, is reclining on the veranda of her Mississippi estate. The air is sultry, heavy with the dampness of an early June evening. The other guests have not yet arrived for the cotillion ball in which her daughter, the lovely 16-year-old Anne Tibellum O'Languid, will be introduced to society. The drowsy hum of the cicadas makes a slow counterpoint to the burping of the alligators in the swamp nearby.
Charlotte: "Oh, devil take those accursed gators. I do believe they've eaten the Swelterings from the next estate. I may swoon!"
Anne strolls onto the porch, lazily wafting a fan about.
Anne: "Mother, dear, do you know if Todd will be there tonight? I do hope so. Why, I've barely been able to sleep at night ever since I saw him without his shirt, poling his river barge by moonlight. I swooned. Twice!"
Charlotte: "Yes, dear, of course he'll be here. I've known his father, Mattias Gritsgobbler, since we were just children. *sigh*"
Anne: "Are they related to the Atlanta Gritsgobblers?"
Charlotte: "Pshaw, Anne. We'd never associate with such commoners as they."
Anne: "Ah, mother. It's so hot out today. Unless someone finds me some sort of refreshment, I shall surely swoon!"
Charlotte: "You mustn't, dear! That's not your swooning petticoat!"
Anne: "If only someone could help me before the sweat dampens my bodice."
At this point, Todd Gritsgobbler arrives. He is holding an alligator by the neck in each hand. River water courses down his hair.
Todd: "Anne, I came running as soon as you mentioned your bodice!"
Anne: "Oh, Todd!" (swoons)
Todd: "Mrs. O'Languid, might I impose on your gracious hospitality long enough to give this to my beloved Anne? Old Wizard Mossbucket gave it to me before he died of the dropsy."
Charlotte: "Of course, young man. What is it?"
Todd: "He said it was a mint julep, but with some sort of French gas bubbled through it. Just the thing for swooning, he said."
Charlotte: "Let me help. You'll probably need to unbutton your shirt."
Todd: "Why, ma'am?"
Charlotte: "Just do it."
He tosses the alligators aside, unbuttons his shirt, and uncorks a bottle. Together, they pour it into Anne's mouth. She stirs.
Anne: "My goodness, how refreshing!"
She sees Todd.
Anne: "Oh!" (swoons)
Todd: "Anne...about your bodice..."

Or at least that's what came to mind when I saw "Plantation Style Mint Julep" at Galco's. I've never actually had a mint julep, so I don't really know what to expect. The slogan on the bottle is "Bubbles of fresh-tasting mint in a soft drink or mixer." Given that the bottle is not shaped like a hand mixer, whisk, or even a spoon, I'm assuming it's a soft drink.

Where and when: purchased 4/11/09 at Galco's, Los Angeles
Color: very pale green.
Scent: Doublemint gum combined with Mountain Dew.
Taste: Faint. An initial impact of citrus, mild, followed closely by a faint mint. The mint is moderately realistic; it's not like a peppermint candy, more like spearmint. Both of those fade quickly, followed a few seconds later by a sweet citrusy aftertaste with a tinge of mint or menthol. Quite mild, surprisingly so.
A bigger swig results in a stronger taste of mint, but it's still very mild. It's pleasant enough, and the mint is unusual.
Kibbitzer-in-Chief: "Tastes like toothpaste tea. But not Tom's of Maine, it's sweeter than that. It could use some liquor, honestly."

A very mild Mountain Dew into which someone has placed pureed Wrigley's gum (but not much).

I note with interest that the ingredients list includes "Flavor". Not "Natural Flavor" or "Artificial Flavor"...just "Flavor". I find this intriguing. Next time I write an ingredients list for something, I plan to include "Food" at the top of the list.

Unless it's Twinkies. You can't lie in ingredients lists.

I also note that it's bottled in Pennsylvania. My mental image is now similar to the one described above, except that Charlotte, Anne, and Todd are all Amish.

Quaff rating: 3. Kind of nice.
Cough rating: 1. The toothpaste factor is noticeable.
Swoon rating: inevitable

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