The Titanic set sail from England 100 years ago today. The ship made two stops, first in France and then in Ireland, before a fateful collision with an iceberg four days later led to its sinking and the death of more than 1,500 passengers. That sinking ranks among the greatest tragedies of its era and has remained a source of fascination for many people and of many books, films and songs.
For those interested in the details, Steven Schwankert of Beijing-based SinoSchuba will host Titanic Trivia: A Night to Remember on Sunday, April 15, at 12SQM. The quiz starts at 7 PM and the prizes include a dive at the Blue Zoo and cocktails.
For those interested in wine and cocktail history, Wine Enthusiast reports that the ship’s manifest listed “1,000 bottles of wine, 850 spirits bottles and 191 liquor cases”. It further states (my highlights):
…a 1911 menu from the Olympic (Titanic’s sister ship) lists the Manhattan, Tom Collins and John Collins. “Those were the cosmos and appletinis of the time,” says Toby Maloney of Alchemy Consulting.
Other drinks can be tied to a Titanic passenger who perished, John Jacob Astor IV. Around the time Astor merged his Astoria Hotel with his cousin’s Waldorf Hotel in New York City, the Bronx was invented. Other cocktails crafted there include the Rob Roy and the Robert Burns.
There is no shortage of cocktail bars in our fair city in which to order one of those drinks and raise a glass in memoriam.
Also of note, Hullett House in Hong Kong will hold a Titanic-themed dinner on April 14 that includes 1907 Heidsieck Monopole Gout Americain, bubbly popular with the well-to-do at the time and bottles of which were sourced at ~rmb70,000 per pop:
….Hullett House is recreating the lavish ten-course dinner menu served in the ship’s First Class Dining saloon on April 14th 1912, the last dinner to be ever served there…. The Dinner on RMS Titanic is served in the opulent surroundings of the JP Hennessy room in the St George restaurant in Hullett House, one of Hong Kong’s magnificent colonial buildings originally built in 1881. The opulence of this lavish dinner will be authentically recreated down to the waiters’ uniforms and table setting. Guests will eat from fine bone china plates originally designed by William Brownfield & Sons and used on board the Titanic.
The cost of the dinner: HKD15,000. And, it is invite-only. Hullett House will have other Titanic-themed meals, however, and you can get more details here.
Finally, for those who prefer not to be reminded of the harsh realities nature tends to shove in the face of humanity in its most immodest moments, there is always the Titanic II, available at Flamme tonight. This drink wasn’t made in honor of the original ship or even the James Cameron-directed movie, but for a sequel that is so bad it is (kind of) good. A few of these and you’ll feel like you’re the king or queen of the world.