One of the many great, forgotten cocktails found in Ted Haigh's book is the Lucien Gaudin, made from ingredients that would cause a lover of vodka martinis to collapse in the fetal position. I had glanced at the recipe in the book, but was inspired to give it a shot after a post on Serious Eats written by Paul Clarke of Imbibe magazine and The Cocktail Chronicles blog.
The cocktail is named after French fencing legend Lucien Gaudin, famous for winning gold medals in the 1924 and 1928 Olympic Games. He also died from one of the saddest cases of bruised pride I've ever seen: "Gaudin committed suicide in 1934 after being wounded on the thumb by a nonfencer during a duel."
Compare that minor injury to the old Austrian "dueling scar" or Renommierschmiss that was a badge of honor and mark of social status. Ritual scarring is not unknown in various cultures around the world, but I wonder how Mom felt when young Helmut came home on Christmas break with his face sliced up from swordfighting at Universität.
1 oz. Gin
½ oz. Campari
½ oz. Cointreau
½ oz. White Vermouth
Combine in a shaker with ice, stir, and strain to serve.
This looks deceptively like cherry Kool-Aid®, but don't let the color fool you. Despite the presence of sugar in the Cointreau and Campari, there is nothing sweet about this cocktail. In fact, such sweetness as there is barely blunts the edge of an insanely bitter, orange peel-flavored cocktail. It's the bastard offspring of a Martini and a Negroni.
That's not a criticism; as stated many times I love bitter flavors. Bring me my coffee black, and my beer full of hops. I think that the Negroni is a little more balanced, but the Lucien Gaudin is a fun change of pace and it's always nice to have another Campari cocktail in the old recipe file.