all the booze that's fit to print

What's going on in the wild and wonderful world of cocktails? 

With unlimited combinations, there's always something new in the world of cocktails.

You’ve heard horror stories about people finding inanimate objects floating in the bottle or can of a beverage they just purchased. What would you do if you were to find, say, a spare engine part sitting at bottom of your bottle of gin?

If you’re drinking The Archaeologist, you wouldn’t think twice about it. This craft gin is made by a Harley enthusiast, who has scoured the planet searching for parts to repair old bikes. Along the way, he decided to start manufacturing gin… and adding engine parts in each bottle. (The parts are treated first so as not to upset either the taste of the liquor or your stomach.)

Depending on which gin you choose, you'll also be getting vintage Harley parts from 1939, 1947, or 1962. Getting thirsty? Even at 900-1,100 per bottle ($1,075-1,315 US), they're currently sold out. But you can visit The Archaeologist to check out their other gear for sale - and presumably to request to be put on a waiting list for when production starts again.

Are cocktails the secret to longevity? For Queen Elizabeth, they might be. The 91-year-old monarch enjoys four alcoholic drinks each day.

She starts shortly before lunch with a gin and Dubonnet (a wine-based aperitif). During lunch, she has a dry gin martini, and finishes her meal with a glass of wine (and a piece of chocolate, which the Cocktail Spy heartily recommends).

That’s right - the Queen has three drinks by midday. But of course, she’s far too dignified to get drunk. So she doesn’t drink again until just before bedtime, when she ends the day with a glass of champagne.

Feeling inspired to follow the Queen's cocktail regimen? No idea if it will work for you, but if you want to try one of her standards, click here for a classic dry gin martini recipe.

Also in London, a celebrated mixologist has created menu of single-ingredient cocktails. Each drink has a namesake ingredient, and every part of that ingredient is used, from skin to seeds to stalks and rinds. 

These cocktails cut down on a lot of waste. At the same time, the uniqueness of each ingredient (including how fresh each one is individually) makes it hard to ensure uniformity between multiple orders of the same drink. Mixologist Rich Woods has figured out a viable solution, though. He mixes large batches of each and blends a little from a previous batch into the newest one to keep the taste consistent. (This technique is called “solera” or a “solera aging system.”)

Click here to see the cocktails that Woods created for London's Duck and Waffle restaurant this summer. If you decide to make any of them, drop me a line at thecocktailspy[at] and let me know how it turned out!

Or, click here for Cocktail Spy's drink of the month.