15 Cocktails inspired by literary greats

Sylvia Plath

Born in Boston in 1932, Sylvia Plath published her first poems as child and achieving academic success as a student at Smith College, despite battling severe depression. Her semi-autobiographical novel The Bell Jar reflects these experiences, depicting an ambitious young woman’s struggle with mental illness and patriarchal oppression in 1950s America.

While studying at Cambridge University in 1956, Plath met and married fellow poet Ted Hughes. Their tumultuous relationship is the source of much 
debate over Hughes’ influence on Plath’s writing and mental health.

Plath’s most famous poetry collection, Ariel, was written in the period following her separation from Hughes, and published posthumously after her suicide in 1963. Plath’s literary accomplishments include helping to establish the confessional genre of poetry, and winning a posthumous Pulitzer Prize in 1982. She stands remains one of the 20th century’s most popular poets.

The Sylvia Plath cocktail

Shake 1 ½ ounces of gin, 1 teaspoon of grenadine, 1 tablespoon of cream and an egg white into a shaker. Pour 1 tablespoon of raspberry coulis into the bottom of a Martini glass. Strain the cocktail over the top and garnish with a raspberry.

This is a raspberry twist on an American classic, the Pink Lady. Like Plath’s oeuvre, this punchy drink has suffered historical critique by male cocktail critics for its feminine name and appearance. With just enough grenadine and cream to create its signature pink hue, this is a gin Martini in a frock.

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