02 September 2010

2 September - Saint Agricola; Stork Club; Cocktail

Memorial of Saint Agricola of Avignon, whose name means "farmer" or "cultivator of fields".  Devotees sometimes asked him for rain in times of drought, but mostly for good weather, especially during the months of August and September, when every dry day was a plus for harvesting crops.

His emblem is a stork, which is based on the story that he thwarted a "plague of storks" or "prevented an invasion of storks by his blessing" (other sources say that he cursed them).

For this he is supposed to be a patron of storks, but since he is reported to have not only cursed them, but also burned them en masse, I'm not sure the storks would want him as a patron.

Actually, it sounds like Avignon experienced the usual August-September migration of storks south for the winter - or the March return to their breeding grounds - although, maybe a little heavier than usual.

Be that as it may, I think we should leave Saint Agricola to caring about the weather.  Speaking of which, there is a hurricane named 'Earl" headed in our  general direction, which cannot be good for our crops.


Which leads us to the Stork Club, that legendary New York social club famously seen in certain Warner Brothers cartoons, usually with that drunken "okay, where can I drop off this baby?" stork, and in the opening of 70's TV show "Ellery Queen" (stand by, fans! The series dvd is slated to come out at the end of September this year!)

I don't know if this cocktail actually came from the Stork Club or was named in honor of it.  It doesn't matter.


1/2 oz Triple Sec or Cointreau
1-1/2 oz gin
1/4 oz lime juice  (fresh)
1 oz orange juice (fresh)
1 dash Angostura Bitters

Shake all ingredients well with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.  Garnish with orange peel or mint leaves and serve.

Ahem!  A couple of those, and Saint Agricola would forget all about the plague of storks - or anything else.