Cheers to Richard Strauss! On the composer's birthday, June 11, try out a few recipes as you sit back and listen to the music that inspired them. Enjoy pieces such as Don Juan, a swashbuckling romp; the iconic and cosmic Also sprach Zarathustra; the misadventures of Till Eulenspiegel's Merry Pranks; and the landscape described in his Alpine Symphony—all sources of inspiration for these concoctions that will put you in great spirits to celebrate Strauss and his legacy. Hear, see, and do more for a virtual birthday celebration!
Don Juan Royale
1/4 oz. of Crème de Cassis
3 oz. Dry Sparkling Riesling
Add crème de cassis to a champagne flute. Slowly pour in the Riesling. Float a raspberry on top.
2 teaspoons of simply syrup
12 oz. stout
2 oz. ruby port
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Pinch of ground cinnamon
Pour the simple syrup into a chilled beer mug and slowly pour in the stout, bringing a full head of foam on top. Float the port on top and sprinkle with nutmeg and cinnamon.
Tip on how to pour beer with a foam head: Once you've poured about half the beer into the glass, straighten the glass and pour the rest of the beer directly into the center. Pouring the second half of the beer this way will allow for the half-inch to inch head of foam you want.
Also Sprach Alexander
2 parts Asbach Uralt Brandy
1 part Crème de Cacao
1 part heavy cream
Combine the first three ingredients in a cocktail shaker full of ice. Stir for 40 revolutions. Slowly strain into a chilled coupe glass. Sprinkle with a light dusting of nutmeg.
Merry Pranks Mocktail
2 parts Coca-Cola
1 part Sanpellegrino
Orange juice (for a sweeter kick) or lemon juice (for a sour kick)
Combine the first two ingredients in a cocktail shaker and stir for 40 revolutions. Pour into a tall glass over ice. Add a splash of juice, depending on your taste preference. Garnish with an orange or lemon twist, respectively.
The pfefferneüsse is an iced cookie that was popularized in central Europe around the 1850s and quickly became a Yuletide staple in Germany. It's likely that Strauss would have enjoyed these spiced cookies as part of his Christmas tradition.