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With up to ten nominees these days, I’ve completely given up trying to represent all films with food at my Oscar dinner. This year I decided to serve southern BBQ in honor of The Help and then themed cocktails for the other eight nominees. Shockingly (or maybe not), I had to buy only one additional ingredient for my bar this week in order to make all of the following. Can you guess what it was?

L’Arbre de vie (or, The Tree of Life at Midnight in Paris)
2 oz applejack
1 oz lime juice
½ oz grenadine
Pomegranate seeds for garnish

The debate rages on as to whether the fruit Eve took from the Tree of Knowledge was an apple or a pomegranate, but this drink hedges its bets by using both. Why the nod to Midnight in Paris? Because this cocktail is essentially the Jack Rose, featured in Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises.

The Moneyball (or, The Green Monster)
½ oz green Chartreuse
½ oz lime juice
3 oz Champagne
1 twist of lime

What better way to say money than a green drink using Champagne?

Méliès L’Artiste (or, Ode to French Film)
1/3 crème de gingembre
1/3 gin
1/3 simple syrup
Champagne topper

This drink is a variation of the French 75, probably invented on the battlefield in the closing stages of WWI, which means it could represent War Horse as well as Hugo and The Artist, but how could I resist including the drink below?

War Horse’s Neck (or, I’ll Take Any Excuse to Serve Bourbon & Ginger)
2 oz bourbon
8 oz ginger ale
2-3 dashes lemon bitters
Horse spiral lemon peel

The Horse’s Neck is named for the shape of the lemon garnish, but it’s obviously just a dressed up bourbon and ginger, my go-to drink for years.

Extremely Strong and Incredibly Good
2 parts rye
1 part tawny port
Cherry bitters
Orange garnish

This is a Ruby Manhattan, that is, a Manhattan made with port instead of vermouth. In principle, I’m choosing to pretend that Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close isn’t really one of the nominees, but I love rye too damn much.

The Descendant (or, Tequila Sunrise, Hawaiian Style)
4 oz. fresh pineapple juice
1½ oz tequila
½ oz grenadine
½ oz orange liqueur
juice of 1 lemon wedge
crushed ice

I chose this recipe for the Chi Chi to represent The Descendants because you add the grenadine last to make descending swirls in the glass. Too perfect.

Which one of these is most appealing to you?

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