Poe Poison Concoction

By | October 19, 2022

Poem, meet cocktail. Cocktail, meet poem. The two are now forever linked thanks to Edgar Allan Poe, famous literary figure and also the inventor of a unique (and rather creepy) cocktail that has come to be known as “Poe’s Poison Concoction” or “Poe’s Poisoned Mind.”

That last one is more common among bartenders who have attempted to recreate this drink at home and found it so potent that they worry they might actually poison someone if they serve it again. But all joking aside, what exactly is in a Poe cocktail and how can you make one at home? Read on for everything you need to know about this grim concoction

Poe’s Poison Concoction: What It Is and How to Make It

Poem, meet cocktail. Cocktail, meet poem. The two are now forever linked thanks to Edgar Allan Poe, famous literary figure and also the inventor of a unique (and rather creepy) cocktail that has come to be known as “Poe’s Poison Concoction” or “Poe’s Poisoned Mind.”

That last one is more common among bartenders who have attempted to recreate this drink at home and found it so potent that they worry they might actually poison someone if they serve it again. But all joking aside, what exactly is in a Poe cocktail and how can you make one at home? Read on for everything you need to know about this grim concoction.

What’s in a Poe Cocktail?

There are a few variations on the recipe, but the most common version is: 2 ounces gin 1/2 ounce each of absinthe, cognac, and grenadine syrup A dash of Angostura bitters A lemon peel for garnish Let’s take a closer look at each of these ingredients and what they might add to the mix.

  1. This base spirit is a classic gin recipe with a slightly sweet, citrus-heavy flavor. You could also go with a dry gin, if you want to steer away from sweetness in the final drink. Absinthe
  2. This strong-flavored, aromatic liquor is notorious for its hallucinogenic properties. While the effect is less pronounced today than it used to be, you could still get a pleasant buzz from a couple glasses of a good absinthe drink. Cognac
  3. This French brandy is known for its rich, oaky flavor. It’s not too dissimilar from American brandy, but it has a more robust taste and a higher alcohol content. Grenadine Syrup
  4. This is a sweet syrup made from pomegranates. It’s an essential part of this cocktail, because it adds depth to the flavor and makes the overall drink a lot less tart. Angostura bitters
  5. These bitters are a classic cocktail ingredient, and they bring a strong, spicy flavor to the drink.

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Why is it Called “Poe’s Poison Concoction”?

The recipe for this drink first appeared in a short story by Poe called “The Black Cat.” In the story, the protagonist prepares a drink for his guests that he calls “Poe’s Poisoned Mind.” It’s not exactly a subtle name if the purpose of the drink is to kill off the guests’ minds, but Poe never explained exactly what went into it.

The cocktail recipe, which takes its name from the story, is believed to be the same one that the narrator used in the story. But the ingredients are strong enough that even if they are the same, they’re likely to knock most people out in one or two sips.

Is It Actually Poisonous?

The ingredients are poisonous, but they’re not likely to kill you if you drink them in the right combination. The idea behind this drink is to give you a one-two punch: you’re knocked out with the alcohol, then the poison kicks in and kills you!

The problem is that you’d need an extremely potent mix of each of these ingredients to kill someone, and a normal cocktail recipe only uses a couple ounces of each. That being said, drinking a lot of these could certainly make you very sick. So if you’re making these for a party, please don’t serve them to minors.

The Downside of Drinking Poe’s Concoction

This drink is kind of like eating a plate of spaghetti and meatballs: it’s not going to kill you, but you’re not getting any real nutritional value out of it. You’re not really getting any health benefits from the ingredients, and the alcohol is likely to give you a nasty hangover. This isn’t an effective way to get drunk!

That means these drinks are best left to the adults. Make sure you’re of age before attempting to make this drink at home, and definitely don’t serve it to minors. If you want to get drunk, this isn’t the best way to do it. The alcohol is really strong, so you’ll likely have a pretty intense hangover the next day even if you’re drinking responsibly.

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