June 30th is Superman’s birthday, the day of his comic debut. Whether you want a Superman cocktail or a Clark Kent drink we have just the thing with the Journalist cocktail. As Superman he had superpowers: bullets bounced off his skin, fire wouldn’t burn him, he scoffed at poison. He was probably also immune from being drunk so long as he wasn’t slipped a little kryptonite in the drink. But Clark Kent was a reporter and we all know reporters drink like fish. That’s why the Journalist cocktail is Drink of the Day.
Born on the planet Krypton and named Kal-El, he was sent to earth as a baby in a small spaceship shortly before the planet was destroyed. He landed somewhere near the town of Smallville, USA, and was found by Jonathon and Martha Kent. The Kents adopted him and named him Clark Kent.
During his childhood Clark became aware of his powers when he noticed his super strength and speed. Those powers, you see, are directly linked to the Earth’s yellow sun as opposed to Krypton’s red sun. He didn’t need to eat or drink, and the more sun exposure he got the more powerful he became.
His parents, of course, encouraged him to hide his extraterrestrial origin and to use his powers for truth, justice, the American way and so on. So as an adult he moved to Metropolis, USA, somewhere near Gotham City, to go into the business of fighting crime. There he took a job as a reporter at the Daily Planet and adopted eyeglasses to disguise his face. In order to change quickly his outlandish costume hid under his street clothes.
Superman’s love interest, of course, was Lois Lane. A fellow journalist at the Daily Planet, Lois considered Clark Kent a wimp. This is widely regarded to be a result of Kent disappearing when things turn dangerous, but here at The Drunkard’s Almanac we believe it’s more likely due to him refusing her offer of wine and brie. Either way, she was infatuated with Superman but never figured out they’re one and the same.
Being the wholesome superhero, Superman didn’t drink until he finally got sloshed in the highly-forgettable movie Superman III. Clark Kent, of course, followed suit. Just goes to show you that criminals like Al Capone or George C. Parker had a lot more fun.
The Journalist Cocktail
In this case we can’t fall back on a favorite drink of our superhero for cocktail inspiration. Sure, people have come up with things they call Superman cocktails, but these are stunt drinks – bizarre layered shots or ugly fluorescent mashups of things like coconut rum and blue Curacao. We have standards to uphold.
Instead we note that Superman was a journalist when he wasn’t flying around foiling the schemes of archenemy Lex Luthor. That, of course, leads us to the Journalist cocktail. It’s a classic, going back to somewhere around the 1930s when it first appeared in The Savoy Cocktail Book.
The Journalist seems like another spinoff from the evolution of the Martini. As you know, the first Martini was Gin and Sweet Vermouth, only later evolving to the dry version we know today. From that came the Perfect Martini, the term “perfect” denoting drinks in which the Vermouth is split equally between dry and sweet. Like the Perfect Manhattan.
Once you’ve got to the Perfect Martini it’s just a small step to reach the Journalist by adding a bit of lemon juice and Curacao.
- Nick and Nora or coupe glass
- Add all ingredients to your shaking tin.
- Add ice and shake until frosty cold.
- Strain into pre-chilled cocktail glass.
- Express twist if using and discard.
- Look for a phone booth if you are so inclined, but do not attempt to fly.