Cosmic Cocktails | Gemini | Twist of Fate


Gemini's Twist of Fate cocktail

Depending on which lore you go with, the story of the Gemini is either based on the Greek twins Castor and Pollus or the Babylonian friends Gilgamesh and Enkidu–either way, you’re dealing with a mortal and an immortal, a pair of like-minded souls.

All mutable signs (signs that cover a change of seasons–in the case of Gemini from Spring to Summer) represent at least a little duality or element of change.

For The Twins, a common name for Gemini, the idea is very much in there being two, together, and sharing of their twin-ness. Gemini are adept at communication and learning, love to people watch, talk to new people and really listen if there’s half a chance of coming across an interesting stranger, but they also play peace-maker or go-between a lot.

Being an air sign, Geminis exhibit a bit of free spiritedness, relish spontaneity, and have a youthfulness that lasts throughout their lives. They love being in the know (which can lead to them being gossips), and can hold their own in any conversation. Many actors and actresses are Geminis, well suited by their desire to never be just 1 sort of person, and a career in journalism suits a Gemini quite well, too.

My mother is, in many ways, a typical Gemini. (Though the claims to be a “cusp” since she’s near the end of the sign, which would be fine if the concept of cusps had any real standing, astrologically–if you don’t fit your sun-sign profile, check your chart for “the rest of the story,” namely your Ascendant. Frankly I think it’s just her Geminian habit of not wanting to be pinned down exerting itself.)

This also explains why we butted heads more than the usual mother-daughter kerfuffles. I remember one summer, she had come to pick me up from Auburn (I was there for a Rotary Model UN) and on the way home she wanted to stop and do all these little road-side adventures (very Gemini) and all I wanted to do was get home, already (stubborn Taurus)! When I do road trips? Even my side-trips are planned.

But back to the Gemini.

Every sign has it’s “good” days and “bad.” On a good day the Gemini is flexible and go-with-the-flow personified. On a bad day? They are flighty and inconsistent. On a good day the don’t pin me down mantra contributes to an independent spirit, and on a bad day it shows up as disloyal or unfaithful. On a good day they’ll listen to your woes and offer sage counsel, on the other hand they can just as easily tell the stories of others–sometimes in painful or embarrassing detail–in the name of “communication.”

This sign is also associates with the color yellow, and the flavor of aniseed (as well as caraway and marjoram). And while true Geminis would bristle at being tied down to just one signature drink, I present this sunny-hued libation in their honor.

Twist of Fate

2 oz Pineapple Juice
1 oz Galliano
.5 oz Limoncello
garnish with a red licorice whip

Combine the Galliano, limoncello and pineapple juice in a shaker over ice and shake well. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a red licorice whip, just to be contrary.

The flavor of the Gemini cocktail is a study in sameness and contrast. The pineapple enhances the sweetness of the limoncello while the notes of anise from the Galliano pick up the tart, and yet together they make a most brilliant yellow cocktail. Still, for those not sure about a licorice-flavored cocktail, be a bit adventurous and give this one a whirl as this really is a well-balanced drink and no single note stands out over the others. In fact, each sip is a slightly different blend, kind of like the Gemini from day to day.

Convergence of Annoying Naming Conventions


the iTini cocktail10-6-2011 ETA: In light of the recent passing of Steve Jobs, I’ve decided to postpone the posting of the next cocktail and leave the iTini up for another week.


As much as I absolutely adore anything that Apple comes out with, I have to admit that the iEverything naming thing is a little much. In fact, it’s almost as annoying as the prevalence of calling anything in a cocktail glass a -tini.

Of course, the -tini appelation is appropriate when the drink is inspired by the original and, well, I suppose the leading lowercase i deserves the same benefit.

The iTini

2 oz Vodka
1 oz Anise-flavored Liqueur

Combine the two alcohols in a shaker over ice and shake like an etch-a-sketch*. Strain into a chilled-but-no-frills cocktail glass and whatever you do, don’t you dare add a garnish.

When I tried to envision what a Mac would taste like (other than plastic and wires and stuff), I envisioned something very clean, streamlined and, yes, an acquired taste. Immediately I thought of anise. Licorice is one of those things you either love or hate, there’s seldom a middle ground. And I think the same is true about the computer we’re paying homage to.

Using what I had on hand meant Galliano so the drink is yellow. Had I been willing to leave the house for the 1,256th errand of the day I would have picked up a clear anise liqueur to keep that sleek white look. But, hey, we all remember the fruity iMacs, right? (I still have a Blueberry G3 at the office!) And iPods come in all sorts of colors. You also want a very clean, crisp vodka so go premium or make something else, like the fabulous Cinco 5-Star I’ve used earlier in the series.

I happen to like both, but I have to be in the mood for licorice. I also use Mac and non-Mac computers–each have their strengths. So while this drink (which only barely qualifies as a true cocktail IF you count the 3rd ingredient as the water that gets mixed-in during shaking) isn’t an everyday drink (figuratively speaking, of course), it has it’s uses.

*Dilbert reference–we’re just name dropping all up in here and, no, neither Apple nor Scott Adams know who I am. But Cinco did send me a bottle of their fabulous vodka to try out and I can’t recommend it enough!