Let’s face it, if you’re putting on a cocktail party this weekend, there is no more epic theme than the anniversary of the moon landing. And this year is very much a milestone anniversary, as it’s the 50th year since we walked on the moon, which has seriously got to be worth a drink.
Throughout human history the moon has been a source of inspiration; a muse for dreamers, if you will. And at no time was that more evident that in the 1960s, where the possibilities of what the future could bring spurred many on to try to make their dreams a reality.
While some believed the Apollo 11 mission was just an elaborate hoax, for most of the world it brought hope and with that the possibility of further exploration and of course an increase in the fine tradition of space-based sci-fi.
Alcohol In Space
Interestingly, it wasn’t until after the moon landing, when NASA’s focus shifted from short missions to possibility of longer-term inhabitation of space, that their interest in taking alcohol into space started.
As with the food they took, they wanted to be careful with the choice of alcohol. In the end, the choice they made was to take Sherry. As a fortified wine, Sherry could be easily repackaged and it was stable enough to endure the rigours of space travel. Unfortunately, Sherry never did make it into space. As soon as the general public heard it mentioned that there might be the presence of alcohol on the astronaut’s menu there was backlash.
As scientist-astronaut Edward G. Gibson, who will fly on the third Skylab mission explained it, “The problem is that you have got some extremists around and we (astronauts) kind of represent a form of purity. As soon as you taint that purity with alcohol, they really get upset,”
As it turns out, there is some scientific evidence for the benefits of alcohol in space. A 2011 paper published in the journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology concluded that “resveratrol”, a phenolic compound found in red wine, “could be envisaged as a nutritional countermeasure for spaceflight.”
The moon landing not only inspired the sci-fi community but bartenders and cocktail connoisseurs alike. There are a whole range of moon related cocktails that would work perfectly for any party.
The most obvious choice is the Moonwalk Cocktail. Created by Joe Gilmore, the legendary Head Barman at the Savoy Hotel’s American Bar, the drink is made with Champagne, Grand Marnier, Grapefruit Juice and Rose Water. While Gilmore never got to serve the cocktail to Armstrong in person, he sent a flask with the drink to NASA. The cocktail was in fact the first thing that Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong drank upon their return to Earth and it is said that Armstrong actually sent Gilmore a note to thank him for the drink.
Or, if you are after something a little bit more Bourbon-based, then a One Way Ticket To The Moon will be a real eye opener. Simply combine 2oz Bourbon, 0.5oz Amaro, 1oz Simple Syrup and a lot of ice to a mixing glass. Once these are all combined, add a cup of Cold Brew Coffee and a dash of Bitters. Mix again, then strain into an ice filled Rocks glass and garnish with Lemon peel.
It’s relatively easy to find moon and star decorations from just about any party shop but we rather like the look of this outdoor-movie-moon-landing night.
Simple and clean, the look utilises moon-shaped lanterns and provides a screen all ready to show moon landing footage, such as NASA’s First Steps On The Moon movie.
When it comes to food, you really can’t go past cheese. After all, if children’s book have taught us anything, it’s that the moon is made of cheese. With this in mind, tasty, bite-size Cheese Ball Bites might seem the next logical option (and they’re really easy to make).
And if you are after something sweet, then food52.com has an homemade Moon Pies recipe that really is an obvious choice.
If you and your guests are a little more ambitious, the amazon has a selection of freeze dried ice cream sandwiches called Astronaut Food that bills itself as ‘The taste of outer space, right here on earth”.
We put together a little moon-based music to see you through the night
If you are unsure what you’ll talk about, then we have a few articles that can provide some fun facts for you and your guests.
Liquor me up, Scotty – Star Trek Vodka is now available and it will be sent into space
The universe is awash with booze – no really …
Why people believe the moon landing was a hoax
And a handy guide to moon landing fast facts
Why we stopped travelling to the moon