Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Gear Shift

You could here the gears grinding in my brain when I tried to switch from Portuguese to Spanish. It didn´t help that one of the guys at the Bed and Breakfast is from Paris, and that the guy who works in the evening is actually from Brazil. I couldn´t even speak basic English; the best I could spew was some unintelligble mush of four languages.

Doing better today. The Spanish here is pretty damn different than any I´ve heard, but since I don´t actually speak Spanish that isn´t much of an issue. I´ve been doing ok if I can think of what I need to say ahead of time, but I am not having much luck in speaking on the spot. And even then only a few people actually understand what I am trying to say. Luckily one was a bartender. ´Punt e Mes´ is on all the menus here, and I´ve read about it & that it´s great in manhattans and negronis and the elusive sazerac, but I´ve never found it. I finally got to try it. It´s a bitter, a vermouth I think. It was a bit of a production - the bartender brought a tub of ice, some orange slices, sparkling mineral water, and the bottle to the table. He put in an orange, added ice, some Punt e Mes, muddled it, added another orange, another cube, more vermouth, muddled it again, then added a bit more vermouth, another ice cube, then topped it all with the soda.

It was tasty, and I´ll be bringing some back.

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