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To Have and Have Another: Hot Rum Punch

Drink like the characters in a Hemingway novel this season with a recipe to warm the body and spirit. 

tohaveandhaveanotherCalled the next best thing to drinking with Hemingway, Philip Greene’s revised edition of To Have and Have Another: A Hemingway Cocktail Companion is out just in time for imbibing during the holidays. A sort of bartender’s manual for Hemingway fans, this revised and expanded volume features 35 new recipes, along with a lively background on the various drinks, their ingredients, histories and the characters — both real and fictional — associated with them.

“This is a book about Ernest Hemingway and what he liked to drink, what he wrote about those drinks, and how to make the drinks that he and his characters enjoyed,” opens the introduction to To Have and Have Another. Greene goes on to praise Hemingway and the rich detail he devoted to describing the simple act of eating and drinking.

While reading — or giving this book as a gift — you’ll want to assemble some bar tools and novels to go with it. Greene suggests a jigger or measuring glass, a cocktail shaker, stirring spoon, Hawthorn or julep strainer, muddler, juicer and knife, along with copies of Hemingway’s major books. Each recipe has a list of suggested reading and notes on memorable scenes and characters partaking in the drink.

Hot Rum Punch appears several times in Hemingway’s Paris era, as he struggles to stay warm in A Memorable Feast and Jake Barnes teaches the proprietor of a Spanish inn to make the drink in The Sun Also Rises. Like it did for Hemingway, this punch will warm your body and spirit this holiday season and maybe even cure some writer’s block.

Hot Rum Punch 

1 1/2 750 ml bottles Barbados or lighter Jamaican rum (or use Rhum Saint James if keeping with the theme in A Moveable Feast)
1 750 ml bottle Cognac
3 quarts boiling water
2 cups lemon juice
Brown sugar, to taste
Handful of cloves

Add all ingredients to a sturdy stockpot or slow cooker. Stir occasionally, simmer on low heat for 30 minutes. Garnish each cup with a spiral of lemon peel, careful to remove the white pith, as it contains unwanted bitterness.

SUGGESTED READING: The Sun Also Rises (Chapter 11), A Moveable Feast (“A Good Café on the Place St.-Michel”)

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