Take care of luxuries and the necessities will take care of themselves.

-Dorothy Parker

Recently, there’s been a lot of luxury, but I’m not quite sure the necessities have managed to iron themselves out. For the past week I’ve been on auto-pilot, producing not one or even two, but no less than four desserts. Yes, four. And each one of them has been hopelessly bloggable (stay tuned) and delicious. If only this blog could write itself. Oh, and my dissertation, too.

This doesn’t even cover all the food I’ve eaten. There have been malted milkshakes, an almond cake (the almond cake that I raved about back in May and that I would happily eat on my deathbed) baked by a friend, Lao food in North Berkeley with college friends and the Greek, as well as an Indian feast chez moi as I prepare to finally return An Invitation to Indian Cooking to the friend who kindly let me borrow it–for over a year. When I say that I’m amazed that I haven’t gone into either a food coma or sugar shock, I’m 99.9% serious. It’s like being on vacation.

Image c/o Cajun Crawfish Pie

Speaking of vacation, I’ve had one of my past adventures on my mind recently; I think it all started with the Andouille sausage and culminated in the Dirty Rice, but I was suddenly recalling the taste and feel of New Orleans. Keep in mind that I was there pre-Katrina (spring break of 2005, in fact) with my two closest college friends. It was our last hurrah before we returned to New York City to finish our senior theses; we planned to eat our way through the city and thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it. Fried green tomatoes, check; coffee and beignets at Cafe du Monde, check; hurricanes–why not when in NOLA, especially if a sugary man-made one that comes in a cup? During the day we would do things like go on swamp tours and, in the evenings, find a place to listen to jazz on Bourbon Street. One night we found ourselves at a jazz club and, having already tried hurricanes and mint juleps, we wanted something “local” and specific to New Orleans (keep in mind that, in 2005, local was hardly the cliche that it is now). We asked the waitress if she–or the bartender–had any drink recommendations. A few minutes later, she returned to the table asking us if we wanted to try a cocktail with Southern Comfort, lime and cranberry juice. We agreed and were soon ceremoniously served “Bloody Snake Bites” (you’ve got to love that the South does not shy away from frightening and evocative names; I adore local color).

One sip later, we understood why the drink had been given such a name. It was tangy and packed a punch; it was certainly sour enough to make you slightly pucker your lips, but not in an unpleasant way. The sweetness of the Southern Comfort and cranberry juice provided a nice contrast. It’s not the kind of drink you forget and, like most cocktails, exists only in its specific chronotope. Ever since that trip, I’ve asked for it in bars, but they never know what I’m talking about. Even a google search yields nothing quite like what I remember (according to WiseGeek, in the bartending world snake bites are a mix of beer and hard cider). So, while it’s easy enough to describe to bartenders, it’s become a drink that I now enjoy at home–but only when a New Orleans kind of mood hits me.

Bloody Snake Bites

Makes one flavorful and potent cocktail

Ice cubes

2 oz. Southern Comfort

4 oz. Cranberry Juice (we used natural and unsweetened, but any will do)

a few splashes of Rose’s Lime Juice

1 lime wedge, as a garnish

-In a glass (highball would be ideal, but work with what you have), add a few ice cubes.

-Pour in the Southern Comfort.

-Add the cranberry juice, as well as a few splashes of Rose’s Lime Juice.

-Garnish with a lime wedge.

-Enjoy the taste of New Orleans!

3 thoughts on “New Orleans Love: Bloody Snake Bites

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