Oracle Cocktail ImageOracle Cocktail

Shake everything with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a thin strip of orange peel.

~ Adapted from "Burke's Complete Cocktail and Drinking Recipes" by Harman Burney Burke

This month I'm introducing a new feature called "Dr. Bamboo Predicts!"

Every so often I peer into my cocktail glass crystal ball and beseech the mystic powers of the cosmos to grant me a glimpse into the future. Channeling the nebulous energies of the great beyond, I attempt to divine What Will Come To Pass. Strangely, the information I receive is always alcohol-related, but who am I to question the motives of those who dwell in dimensions untraveled by man?

Here then, are my predictions for the coming months...

  • We will see premium vodka brands continue to outdo each other, culminating in a product that is distilled 437 times. Upon opening the bottle, the consumer will be greeted by a fleeting whiff of the finest vodka vapor ever produced, much to the envy of those who are stuck having to make do with the inferior liquid variety.

  • Spurred to action by the popularity of the "Pickleback", Vlasic responds by introducing a new product titled "Cocktail 'Cukes", consisting of a single pickle sold in a 5-gallon bucket of brine.

  • Speakeasy-style craft cocktail bars will continue to flourish, employing ever-increasing levels of secrecy and exclusivity as marketing strategies. By year's end, one East Coast establishment will conclude a customer's visit by confiscating all forms of identification and completely erasing his memory before depositing him naked in a rural area many miles outside the city. Employing measures such as this to protect a bar's location will become commonplace and seen as an indicator of commitment to making quality cocktails.

  • Infusing spirits with meat will remain popular, leading one particularly motivated home mixologist to place a whole, live hog into a sherry cask filled with Bourbon.

  • In an unprecedented move, several distillers and brewers will join forces to release a new pre-mixed beverage that combines Cuervo, Jagermeister, Captain Morgan, Jack Daniel's, Aftershock, Budweiser, Coors and Miller Lite in one convenient drink. Targeted at the spring break crowd, it will come packaged in an unbreakable Funnel-Top(tm) bottle and includes a prepaid cell phone set to dial 911.

  • "Absinthe Julius" franchises will begin appearing in shopping malls.

  • The tiki bar renaissance will progress at a steady pace, ushering in new technological advances in pursuit of recapturing the atmosphere of bygone venues. One such location in California will employ state-of-the-art robotics to create eerily lifelike android businessmen that can produce a wide range of culturally insensitive remarks and grope female servers with stunning realism.

  • The cocktail community's insatiable demand for new flavors of bitters will prompt one manufacturer to produce a line based on the more rarefied precincts of the periodic table of elements. "J.R. Oppenheimer's Plutonium Bitters" proves to be one of the more popular varieties, but a protracted struggle over FDA approval hurts initial sales.

  • A heretofore-undiscovered Egyptian tomb will be excavated, and among the contents are what is believed to be the oldest drink guide ever written.  Cocktail historians will debate endlessly whether the Sazerac recipe contained in the crumbling papyrus scrolls is authentic.

  • President Obama's approval rating skyrockets after a photo of him swigging gleefully from a bottle of Fernet Branca is widely circulated.

  • Cocktail service on commercial airlines will be upgraded significantly to meet the demands of travelers who are finicky about their drinks. In addition to their regular training, flight crews will also be required to pass the BarSmarts program, and the coach section of most aircraft will be eliminated entirely in order to provide room for Kold-Draft machines, absinthe fountains, and a variety of glassware.

  • Most people will still make a "yuck" face when you tell them you like gin.

Thanks for drinking!

~ Dr. Bamboo