History and Mixology of 1930’s Cocktails

Posted By:  Liz Goodrich
Date Posted:  4/19/2012

Columbine QuillenDeschutes Public Library is pleased to welcome Columbine Quillen to the Downtown Bend, Sunriver Area, and Redmond Libraries  for three programs as part of the 2011 A Novel Idea …. Read Together community wide reading project. The programs are free, but require advanced registration.  The classes are full, but the library is gathering names for waiting lists on the web site.

Monday, April 30, 2012, 6:00 pm
Downtown Bend Public Library

Tuesday, May 1, 2012, 12:00 noon
Sunriver Area Public Library

Tuesday, May 1, 2012, 6:00 pm
Redmond Public Library

This year’s Novel Idea selection, Rules of Civility, by Amor Towles, delves into the world of Katey Kontent, a young woman living in New York City, 1938. Throughout the course of that singular year in their lives, Katey and her friends discover what it means to live authentic lives in a world on the verge of change.

During her program, Quillen will demonstrate how to mix two unique cocktails she created especially for the Novel Idea … Read Together project. “I knew I had to create a gin cocktail, as that is all the characters in Rules of Civility drink,” says Quillen. “I created the Tinker Grey Toddy and the Miss Kontent. The Miss Kontent is light and feminine with rose petal syrup and gin and as Mr. Grey is warming and cordial – so is his cocktail.”

Quillen will also discuss the history of cocktails. In March of 1933 the Volstead Act passed ending prohibition. According to Quillen, some historians feel that the birth of mixology really happened during prohibition because moonshine tasted so terrible that people had to be creative at disguising its flavor by mixing it with other ingredients, including herbs and spices. “What I think is really so special about this era however, is that it is the first time you are seeing women in bars,” says Quillen. “Before prohibition it was very rare to see a woman in a bar but prohibition changed that as women started going to speakeasies!”

This will be second time Quillen has created specialty cocktails for A Novel Idea. In 2012 she mixed the memorable “The Help,” a cocktail featuring ginger infused vodka, pecan syrup, and maple flavored cotton candy. Quillen says “I am honored to once again be a part of the Deschutes Public Library's Novel Idea Program. I think that it is one of the coolest literary programs I have ever heard of as it is an opportunity to explore a book in ways that most people haven't even thought possible.” Considered one of the nation's top mixologists, Quillen specializes in cocktail history, bitters, foams, and infusions. Her bartending career is on hold while she attends law school in Salem.

For more information about this or other Novel Idea programs, please visit the library website at People with disabilities needing accommodations (alternative formats, seating or auxiliary aides) should contact Liz at 312-1032.

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