September 20: George R. R. Martin

George_R_R_Martin_2011_ShankboneThe A Song Of Ice And Fire series (the inspiration for the hit tv show Game Of Thrones) is one of the great works of fantasy literature. Now you would probably expect that an epic tale of kings, knights and witchcraft, filled with political intrigue and dramatic twists, would be written by an Englishman. Nope, instead the epic saga of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros was dreamed up by a New Jersey born son of a longshoreman, George R. R. Martin, who was born today in 1948.

Of course, most folks know Martin as the writer of the aforementioned ASOIAF series, a series he began in 1996 and has so far only finished five of seven volumes. However, he’s also written sixteen other novels and short stories that dabble in sci-fi, fantasy, horror and other fun genres. Additionally, Martin’s done a lot of tv work, writing an episode of Game Of Thrones each season and in the 1980s writing for Beauty & The Beast and the short lived revival of The Twilight Zone. On top of working on those two cult classics, Martin also was briefly a staff writer for Max Headroom, another ’80s tv show with a large cult following. Unfortunately for Martin, that particular program was canceled just before the episodes he wrote could be filmed. Of course, my favorite works by Martin are the fan letters he sent in to Marvel Comics in the 1960s in which he determined which villains were the best foes for the Fantastic Four.

In 2013, drinking website DoubleNeat curated a menu of cocktails to mark the start of Game of Thrones‘ third season. It’s only appropriate that we use one of these drinks to honor Martin’s birthday. The Dragon Lady is a cocktail inspired by Daenerys Targaryen, the strong willed exiled “mother of dragons” who is slowly making her way to back to Westeros to claim the Iron Throne, which she believes rightfully belongs to her family. When Daenerys was first introduced in the series, she seemed to be weak and naive, but has since become a strong willed leader. Much like Daenerys herself, The Dragon Lady’s appearances are quite deceptive. Sure, it looks like a simple blend of vodka and citrus, but the presence of dragon fruit adds an unusual texture to the cocktail; and the dash of cayenne pepper gives it a nice strong kick.

The Dragon Lady

  • 2 ounces Vodka
  • 1 ounce mango juice
  • 1/2 ounce lime juice
  • 1/2 ounce Triple Sec
  • Fresh dragon fruit, cubed
  • Dash cayenne

Place the vodka, juices and triple sec in a cocktail shaker with ice and shake well. Strain into a chilled glass, add dragon fruit cubes and the cayenne.

Tomorrow: “I’m just paying my rent everyday In the Tower Of Song.”


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