Autumn Frost

  • 2 oz. Square One Botanical
  • 3/4 oz. Averna
  • 1/4 oz. St. Germain elderflower liqueur
  • 3 drops Fee's mint bitters

Shake everything with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.

~ A Dr. Bamboo original creation

I've discussed Halloween here before, but I've neglected to cover one of the key aspects of the holiday: costumes. I think we can all agree that Halloween would be a pretty stale affair without costumes, so it's time I took a few moments to address this important topic.

And since this is a column dealing with cocktails & spirits, I've come up with some festive drinking-themed costume ideas for your upcoming Halloween parties. I've also taken great care to select costumes that are unlikely to be duplicated by others, as well as being relatively inexpensive and easy to assemble. Here's a few suggestions:

Zombie: Not the undead person, but the drink. Paint a tiki face on a 55-gallon drum, climb inside, and fill with various rums, fruit juices and syrups. Hand out lengths of PVC pipe to use as straws, and let the fun start. (Note: if there are cocktail geeks present, be prepared to tell them whether you're the 1934, 1950, or 1956 recipe. Failure to do so will diminish the credibility of your costume).

Jerry Thomas: Make a construction-paper moustache and fashion a pair of arm garters from electrical tape. Once you're at the party, flamboyantly toss flaming drinks into the air like you've been doing it for years. Before leaving, write an influential bar guide.

Hawthorne Strainer: Strap a Slinky to your head and lash your feet together with duct tape. Cover yourself head-to-toe in silver paint. Midway through the evening, suddenly fling the Slinky from your head and throw yourself in the trash.

Mr. Boston's Guide: No special equipment required. Simply splash yourself with a variety of liquor and curl up under your host's bar.

Pickleback: Get two large, clear plastic buckets that will hold at least 4 gallons each. Fill one with whiskey and the other with pickle brine. Carry one in each hand and offer everyone a round. If someone appears reluctant, redouble your efforts. Employ mockery and peer pressure if necessary. A favorite with bartenders.

Closing Time: On your face, draw a clock that reads 1:45. Spend the evening alternately yelling "Last call!" and switching all the lights on. You'll be the life of the party.

Bottle of Fernet Branca: Rent one of those beer bottle costumes and write "Fernet Branca" on it. Be aware that most of the other partygoers won't have the faintest idea what you are, but the few who do will either love your costume passionately or loathe it. (Note: this outfit will inexplicably be more popular in San Francisco than anywhere else).

Old Guy at the End of the Bar: Wear a stained warm-up jacket and a battered hat. Hold a draft beer with pepper in it like it was made of solid gold. Spend the evening hunched over, smoking, and scowling at anyone under the age of 50. (For bonus fun, carry a video poker machine with you and mutter profanities while continuously shoving quarters into it).

State of Pennsylvania: Glue leaves over your entire body. On the back of one hand write "Pittsburgh" and on the back of the other write "Philadelphia." Carry a large amount of alcohol but refuse to give out any if it happens to be Sunday or after 9 p.m.

Chunk of Hand-Carved Ice: Find a hot tub or kiddie pool. Fill with water, submerge yourself up to the neck, and then freeze. Once the water has frozen completely, have a friend transport you to the party. Bring along ice picks, knives, bar spoons, etc., and encourage others to chisel away! Then have them pour quality whiskey over you.

Happy Halloween...Thanks for drinking!

~ Dr. Bamboo