The grand monkey gland

To tide you over until the imminent cessation of this blog’s unexpected hibernation, here’s some of what you come here for: food and science. Well it’s drink and science in this case. And the science part is that there are beakers and gloves involved. And that most of the people at the table were scientists.

May I present the Monkey Gland Hand, a cocktail at Salon Lounge here in Brisbane. I went there with a group of friends for my birthday very recently and we partook of some rather elaborate and creative cocktails.


(Harvesting the Monkey Gland Hand is a precision operation.)

The Monkey Gland Hand is Beefeater gin, Kubler Swiss absinthe, blood orange juice and homemade grenadine glaze: a slight variation of the original Monkey Gland cocktail, served as you can see in a surgical glove, on a surgical tray, with surgical scissor and a beaker. The person who served it to us also gave us a slightly garbled version of this Wikipedia article on Serge Voronoff as an explanation for the drink’s origins (short version: attaching monkey testicles to people for purportedly therapeutic purposes in the 1920s – of course).

Above is The Ego, inspired by The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. It contained Beefeater 24 gin, white chocolate liqueur, oolong tea, vanilla syrup, lemon juice, pear juice and cucumber foam. I had its complementary drink, The Alter Ego, which was Beefeater 24 gin, peach liqueur, orange bitters, mandarin glaze, lychee juice, mandarin juice, lemon juice and a frozen liquid nitrogen crust.

Espresso Head: Havana Club Anejo Reserva rum, Pernod Ricard, tonka bean sugar syrup and espresso, topped with vanilla and milk foam.

If you’re now in the mood for cocktails but the contents of these seem a bit too encyclopaedic or unattainable or hatefully complex, don’t forget 12 Bottle Bar for something maybe a tiny bit more simplified, but just as effective.

However, you must always consider surgical gloves as serving vessels for all imbibable liquids, from this day forth. I know I will.

  7 comments for “The grand monkey gland

  1. February 19, 2011 at 8:36 pm

    Oh Jess, I discovered a restaurant called Dishoom. They do Chaijitos. It’s the most delicious cocktail I’ve EVER hard. Chai infused rum. Oh god.

    • Jess
      February 23, 2011 at 2:30 pm

      I just looked that up on Google Maps… it’s a very short stroll from where I was staying on Dean St. If only I had known! Got to find my way back to London post-haste.

  2. February 20, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    Ah, the 1920s. A time of wonderment: flapper dresses, the Charleston, and monkey testicles. Oh, that I had been born in such a glorious time!

    The Ego sounds particularly wonderful to me, and I’m not even much of a cocktail drinker myself. Also… hello again! ;)

  3. February 20, 2011 at 5:18 pm

    Aw it’s nice to see an update from you! What awesome drinks. I especially never ever expected to see a glove involved in any way in the presentation of a cocktail 8).

  4. February 21, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    Hrm. I’m torn. Love the surgical glove idea, but HATE the smell of surgical gloves. Luckily though, I totally love monkey testicles, so bring it on.

  5. February 22, 2011 at 7:23 am

    Thanks for the mention, and those drinks look very intriguing. Glad to hear, with everything that hit Brisbane, that you’re still able to drink properly — and then some.

  6. March 10, 2011 at 10:22 pm

    What fun cocktails!

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