Thursday, December 4, 2014

From The Bar - The After Dinner Drink - White Russian

For me, one of my favorite after dinner drinks is the ever popular White Russian. Most of us know what a white russian is, but not all of us know the origin of the drink. I find it fascinating how something like the white russian becomes so popular and secondly how did the combination or liqueurs and flavors get put together? Who made it? All these things go through my mind when I find a drink like this. 

For the origination of the white russian we first need to visit the black russian. The drink is said to have been created in 1949 by Gustave Tops, a Belgian bartender who created the drink at a hotel called the Hotel Metropole in Brussels. The drink is said to honor Perle Mesta, then US Ambassador to Luxembourg. Ole Perle, must have drank his fair share. The Russian part of the name comes obviously from the vodka and the black part comes for the dark chocolate color of the coffee liqueur, Kahlua. 

That leads us then to the white russian, a twist to the black russian. Credit for the white russian discovery is given to the Oakland Tribune back in 1965, as it was in the paper as an insert, with the ingredients listed. Okay, so that's the simple history behind the drink, but what makes it so popular. How does word travel so fast that people try this drink, love it, and just like that it becomes popular in our every day world? That designation probably belongs to the the "Dude," from the movie the Big Lebowski. Sure, many people knew of the drink by the time the movie came out in 1998, but the "Dude" is the man that popularized it despite his tendency to call the drink the "caucasion."

This time of year will bring all types of groups together for dinner parties. Usually, for those dinner parties, it's a full night out for a nice relaxing evening. For me, the perfect end to a relaxing evening is capped off by some type of after dinner drink. We all have a good time with friends or coworkers and the discussion around the table seems to go on for hours! A nice after dinner drink can actually help to relax our full belly's and extend our evening. I look forward to those parties, and I look forward to my relaxing after dinner drink. I urge you, if you have not already tried the "caucasion," I mean white russian, to make it your after dinner drink of choice this holiday season.  

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