Friday Cocktails: Punch Romaine

This weekend marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, perhaps history’s most famous maritime disaster. For me, this is a big deal: I’ve been a Titanic history fanatic since childhood, pouring over every book I could find on the passengers, dinner menus, and deck plans, including Robert Ballard’s incredible volume Discovery of the TitanicFriday Cocktails: Punch Romaine, about the submersible dive to the wreckage.

In the course of my reading, I came across a copy of the ship’s passenger manifest — and to my utter astonishment, I found a first class passenger with my family name. Miss Edith Corse Evans, a New Yorker, was one of four first-class women to perish in the icy waters of the Atlantic. She was 36 years old when she died, just 5 years older than I am right now, and I’ve often wondered about her experience onboard: did she stroll along the decks mingling with the Astors and Strausses? How did she have the courage to give up a seat on one of the last lifeboats to fellow passenger Mrs. Caroline Lane Brown? Did she partake in that famous ten-course, twenty-four dish final dinner?

In honor of the Titanic‘s anniversary — and Miss Edith Corse Evans — I was inspired to make a cocktail based on the dinner’s sixth course, a palate-cleanser of rum-spiked Punch Romaine. An original Escoffier creation, the recipe as the great chef devised it was more of a granita or sorbet; I’ve modified the recipe into a drinkable cocktail, poured over its very own iceberg of crushed ice.

See the recipe for the Punch Romaine »