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Home » Culture and Criticism

The NC Double Shot Round of 32, Flight 2

Submitted by on May 31, 2011 – 7:45 AM27 Comments

Today's write-ups by Sarah D. Bunting. Confused? Click here. Need an ingredients breakdown? We recommend Google, straight up with a twist.

1 Martini / Gibson vs. 9 Mimosa. The Martini pounded its opponent last time; I foresee a much tighter race this time. The Mimosa is a daytime-drinking staple for a reason: it's refreshing, and there isn't a learning curve or acquired-taste problem — Martinis can make themselves hard to like. On the other hand, that challenging quality is perhaps what makes the Martini appealing to some, that hunt for the right blend or the personalized order — drier or dirtier; more olives or fewer — that makes a drink your own. And it's so damn cinematic. Martinis by a hair. ["Martinis marked the beginning of my publishing career…" — Keckler]

1 Martini / Gibson vs. 9 Mimosa

  • Mimosa (65%, 429 Votes)
  • Martini / Gibson (35%, 232 Votes)

Total Voters: 661

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12 Mai Tai vs. 4 Pimm's Cup. I'm a little surprised to see the Mai Tai outside the first round, since it's basically a fruit salad with rum poured on to– you know, I just talked myself into one. It's hot and muggy here in the 718 today and that sounds really delish. But on a hot and muggy day, very few things beat a Pimm's Cup, including a Mai Tai. The MT barely squeaked through last time; its journey ends here.

12 Mai Tai vs. 4 Pimm's Cup

  • Pimm's Cup (57%, 350 Votes)
  • Mai Tai (43%, 259 Votes)

Total Voters: 609

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6 Long Island Iced Tea vs. 3 Manhattan. The other night, I met friends for a drink and a Mets game (because these days, you can scarcely get through the second thing without the first). I'd had a long day of hucking furniture around and I'd decided at around 3:30 PM that I'd have a bourbon Manhattan when I got to the bar, so I asked Bean to order me a bourbon Manhattan straight up while I went to the ATM. When I got back, I found a Dan-hattan instead — the bartender had made it with Jack Daniel's, for reasons that escaped…um, everyone — and it had no cherry in it. Unacceptable, and yet still better than an LIT. It's got a crisp tartness to it that I just love (and he hit the second one right on the sweet spot) and somehow it makes every drink after it taste better too. I don't think it has the nostalgic cachet of the LIT, but Manhattan moves on to the Sweet Hic!steen. ["…and Manhattans marked the end." — Keckler]

6 Long Island Iced Tea vs. 3 Manhattan

  • Manhattan (62%, 382 Votes)
  • Long Island Iced Tea (38%, 234 Votes)

Total Voters: 616

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10 Margarita vs. 2 Mojito. Why did we rank Margs so low? Keckler's going to say we were drunk, but in retrospect, it seems obvious even to the soused that it would spank Irish Coffee…and I think it's going to upset the Mojito as well, because it's better known and doesn't have that (undeserved, but still) whiff of the obnoxious foodie about it. I can't bring myself to choose, but you'll choose Margaritae.

10 Margarita vs. 2 Mojito

  • Margarita (61%, 397 Votes)
  • Mojito (39%, 258 Votes)

Total Voters: 655

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1 Screwdriver vs. 8 Planter's Punch. I don't care for Screwdrivers. I'm all for a simple (read: "boring" — heh) drink, but there's simple, and then there's cheap vodka and store-bought OJ; it just forms a sourness in the sinuses that I don't like. A well-made PP makes you want to sing and read Hemingway. ["I clearly don't hit the Planter's Punch bowl hard enough because I never want to read Hemingway." — Keckler] I think it's got a good shot here.

1 Screwdriver vs. 8 Planter's Punch

  • Planter's Punch (51%, 301 Votes)
  • Screwdriver (49%, 292 Votes)

Total Voters: 593

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12 Sidecar vs. 13 Shirley Temple. Two upset winners face off, and I just don't know how to call it, because I don't know if the "ha ha, let's vote for Shirley Temples for the fond memories" momentum will continue. I like Sidecars, but I don't think I've ever ordered one — not a huge fan of brandy in a mixed drink — and it's entirely possible that the non-alcoholic future Congresswoman proceeds to the next round.

12 Sidecar vs. 13 Shirley Temple

  • Shirley Temple (60%, 364 Votes)
  • Sidecar (40%, 240 Votes)

Total Voters: 604

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6 Tom Collins vs. 14 Zombie. Hmm. The Zombie gnawed its way into the Ro32 by 8 votes, and I do find the Tom Collins marginally more appealing, although I'd prefer to delete the powdered sugar from the mix — but I like the Zombie in theory, its mid-century chrome-and-fins space-age-bachelor-tiki-pad feel. ["Say what you will about foodies — obnoxious or otherwise — but they're the pushers who basically replaced powdered sugar with simple syrups in drinks. Make it in bulk and store it in the fridge for whenever." — Keckler] You've got to admire a drink whose signature quality is that the list of ingredients that aren't in it is probably shorter. I'd have no problem with a Zombie win — but I'm voting Collins, and I predict you will too.

6 Tom Collins vs. 14 Zombie

  • Tom Collins (73%, 408 Votes)
  • Zombie (27%, 149 Votes)

Total Voters: 557

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7 Tequila Sunrise vs. 2 Sangria. It's no contest for me, and it's likely no contest for Sangria. The Sunrise had a soft opponent in the last round; no such luck here. Sangria in a landslide. ["It's another Tequila Sunrise, staring slowly across the skyyyy. Said goodbyyyye. He was just a hired haaaand, working on the dreams he planned to tryyyyyyy. The days go byyyyyyyy." — Keckler] ["Fired." — Bunting]

7 Tequila Sunrise vs. 2 Sangria

  • Sangria (84%, 533 Votes)
  • Tequila Sunrise (16%, 99 Votes)

Total Voters: 632

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  • Jthan says:

    It is just past eight in the morning here, and there is already coffee spilled on me due to Eagles lyrics and "fired." You two are hilarious! Thank you for starting a day with a laugh and a smile!

  • attica says:

    You know, I wasn't going to vote for Shirley T until I read "future Congresswoman". That sealed it. (That, and I have no love for sidecar, other than it actually contains alcohol.)

    I am hoping for a mojito upset. Pleeeease vote for the minty, citrusy, rummy delight!

  • Liz says:

    I love a Shirley Temple. Since almost everyone in my circle has been pregnant recently, it's practically replaced wine as the drink of choice when we get together.
    Of course, my sister's friend orders a Shirley Temple Black, which has vodka in it, I think. (and somehow seems wrong…)

  • K. says:

    Margarita vs. mojito? Y'all are KILLING ME. Two great loves!

  • cayenne says:

    Oh, the trauma of choosing between the Margarita and the mojito! On an ice-cube-chewing day like this, the Marg goes great, but it comes down to liking rum slightly more than tequila.

    Oh, and I voted this round for the Shirley Temple as an I-hate-the-opponent vote, but if it wins the whole shebang, I'll be beyond disgusted with us all.

  • Watts says:

    Sidecars were the surprise hit of my "Drinking through the Decades" cocktail party. Hate to see it going down to original "mocktail."

  • DuchessKitty says:

    You guys. I'm beyond mad at this point. First my beloved Sea Breeze fell to the Shirley Temple; now it looks like the yummy awesome Sidecar is going to be conquered? By a non-alcoholic blahness that's just Sprite and grenadine and a stupid maraschino cherry? Grrrrrr…so upset.
    This was the easiest round of voting for me so far. Clear favorites here – Martini, Mojito, Pimm's, Sangria, SIDECAR

  • Mimi says:


    That sounds like the best party ever. I don't have enough space right now to throw my own, or I would have one tomorrow.

  • Other Rachel says:

    "I clearly don't hit the Planter's Punch bowl hard enough because I never want to read Hemingway." — Keckler


    This vote is making me realize how many drinks I haven't tried. I tend to drink beer over cocktails, but I'm thinking I might get adventurous at bar trivia tonight!

  • KTB says:


    I voted the Marg simply because the mojito, while delicious, is a monstrously difficult drink to make, and I have waited (often too long) for mine to make an appearance. A margarita has never made me wait. Love.

  • Hannah says:

    There's an old tiki bar throwback to the 1950s here in southwest Florida that makes a MEAN mai tai. Two-drink max. It's like the sweetest kick in the teeth ever. (They also have a slightly-less-deadly version called the Sneaky Tiki–also two-drink limit. When you finish your two mai tais and consider it a good idea to go for your Sneaky Tiki quota, too, well…bad things happen.)

  • ferretrick says:

    ["I clearly don't hit the Planter's Punch bowl hard enough because I never want to read Hemingway." — Keckler]

    I do not want to hit any drink enough that it would make me want to read Hemingway ever again.

  • Jen says:

    "my "Drinking through the Decades" cocktail party"

    I know what I'm doing this weekend.

    Anyone who loves a Mojito so run, not walk to try an Old Cuban. It has similar ingredients with better balance thanks to darker rum and bitters. Plus it is topped with bubbles!

  • annabel says:

    Two Sophie's Choices for me this round. Mimosa over martini, and margarita over mojito. Mimosa because champagne! and margarita because it is simpler. My nephew's recipe of two parts tequila, one part triple sec and one part fresh lime is the best. no salt! A mojito, while delicious, is more of a pain to make. All that muddling.

  • Janie says:

    Regarding the Margarita vs. Mojito conundrum:

    Margaritas are like pizza and sex: even when they're bad, they're still pretty good.

    A bad mojito is generally just … bad. Like one made with Sprite. Or the abomination I once tried that called itself an "Italian Mojito". (There was amaretto involved. It tasted of regret. Regret and vomit.)

  • Linda says:

    The margarita will not put up with this disrespect.

  • Beadgirl says:

    No! My beloved mojitos can't lose!

    I think I'll console myself with the last of my homemade strawberry lemonade and a shot of gin.

  • Sarah says:

    I voted mojito. I…yeah…tequila. Let's call it mild PTSD and thousands of dollars in dental bills. I just can't fully enjoy it.

  • MizShrew says:

    This whole Shirley Temple thing is giving me bad flashbacks of waiting tables at a suburban supper club in the mid-80s. Ever waited tables for a family when one of the kids is jacked up on the sugar from three of those things? Argh. Please vote for the sidecar!

  • Tylia says:

    I'm glad to see I'm not the only one who had to Sophie's Choice it through the Margaritas/Mojitos decision. And truthfully I want mojitos to win, because it's my drink of choice now (or would be if i weren't 'with child' [god that's smurfy]), but my god it was hard.

  • Judy says:

    Ok. Threw away a vote on the tequila sunrise, only because I haaaaaaate sangria.

  • Sarah D. Bunting says:

    So YOU'RE the one.

  • Keckler says:

    Guys, I really didn't mean for my "do it for the kids" Shirley Temple speech to also oust the Sidecar.

    Dammit, why do I gotta be so influential?!

  • Leah in SoCal says:

    My grandpa possibly has the best Zombie drinking story ever…

    During WWII, he lived in New Orleans. His brother-in-law had leave and came to visit. Hearing this, bro-in-law's brother got himself grounded by shooting at some birds, so that he could come visit, too. The three of them hit Bourbon Street, vowing to drink the special of the house at every bar. First one they walked into had the Zombie. Bro-in-law's bro walked up to the bar and ordered one; not to be outdone, bro-in-law ordered a double. My grandpa, feeling that his manhood was on the line, ordered a triple Zombie.

    They ended the night by trying to swim Lake Pontchartrain. To a party boat. Obviously.

    So vote for the Zombie in honor of Grandpa "Triple Zombie" SoCal.

  • Watts says:

    I'm hoping for some recruiting violations to knock Miss Temple out before the final rounds. I mean, if she knocks out the Sidecar after having knocked out the Sea Breeze, will the Screwdriver or Planter's Punch (too close to call right now) be any sort of challenge?

    @Mimi and @Jen
    Drinking through the Decades was a lot of fun – and a good way to learn that white wine spritzers are kinda narsty. For the record the lineup was: 1910s: Dry martini, 1920s: Old-Fashioned, 1930s: Sidecar, 1940s: Daiquiri, 1950s: Ultradry martini, 1960s: Gin and tonic, 1970s: White wine spritzer, 1980s: Margarita, 1990s: Cosmopolitan, 2000s: Rye Manhattan. Somewhat arbitrary, but we did a little research about what spirits came into vogue when – and we wanted to avoid blenders/frozen drinks.

  • DuchessKitty says:

    @Watts thanks for sharing your list for your "Decades" party. I am so doing this next month, but I might switch out one of the martini recipes for something else.

    And for the record, I'm still super upset about this Shirley Temple bullsh*t.

  • Laura says:

    Margaritas, even the good ones, are ruined by the crappy-tequila-and-fruit-flavor-in-a-slurpee-machine abominations that are now served everywhere. I could not bring myself to vote for that, even if I didn't love mojitos (which I do. So very much).

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