Richmond, let's not be coy. We love attention. It doesn't matter if it's because we made the top 60 of the "500 Best Places to Live in States That Begin With ‘V'" list in Money magazine or because the director's cut of Gods and Generals screened again late night on TNT.
We just want to be loved, and that's OK. But our grand plans haven't really panned out. We've already advertised the fact that we're "Easy to Love." What more does it take?
It looks like the only way we're going to get the rest of the country to fall in love with us is if we get them sloppy drunk first. If we work together, we can make Richmond one of the greatest drinking cities in the United States. Are we really going to let backwaters like San Francisco, Austin and Virginia Beach beat us? Virginia Beach? If you can live with the fact that the home of saltwater taffy out-drinks Fist City, so be it. I can't.
Here's the plan: Unleash a battalion of consummate Richmond cocktails on an unsuspecting nation. Talk them up, drink them up and order them up by name everywhere. Once people get a taste for these customized River City libations, we'll become a first-class drinking destination. And then we can finally tell Cleveland to go suck it.
Shockoe Stadium Mudslide
The only cocktail dedicated to the marriage of our national pastime and the city's favorite 100-year-old flood plain. A murky mix of Kahlua, Bailey's and hot cocoa served in an oversized batting helmet, garnished with adorable baseball-shaped marshmallows and a mini Louisville Slugger. Serves nine.
Pro: According to early reports, this drink is supposed to pay for itself!
Con: By order of the ABC, personal flotation devices are required when enjoying this drink.
Frozen Folk Festival
An eclectic, slushy-cold mash of imported liquors, exotic fruit juices and assorted milks from livestock around the world. Blended and served in an authentic didgeridoo.
Pro: Free didgeridoo!
Con: Even if you don't like the taste, you have to pretend that you appreciate the ingredients and the effort it took to make the drink possible.
A mysterious cocktail served in a futuristic-looking, black cylinder thingy filled with dry ice. We're not sure of the exact contents, but we are obliged to let you know that drinking it could cause lung cancer, heart disease and emphysema, and may complicate pregnancy.
Pro: Looks cool.
Con: May kill you.
Virginia whiskey served over crushed ice and garnished with generous sprinkles of allspice, cardamom, celery seed, paprika, tarragon and Jamaican jerk seasoning.
Pro: Feels healthy, like drinking a salad.
Con: Belches taste like punishment.
Whipped Cantor Colada
A new take on an old Southern favorite: Virginia Gentleman, Orange Julius and grenadine garnished with shad roe. A little bit stiff and frothy, but Republicans seem to like it.
Pro: It's a big improvement on the Whipped DeLay Daiquiri.
Con: May leave a strange aftertaste, like you just put your foot in your mouth.
Belle Isle Iced Tea
The perfect summer drink for lazy days along the rapids: 180-proof grain alcohol with splashes of PBR, Diet Coke and Minute Maid Lemonade.
Pro: Can also be used as a fuel for most motorized lawn equipment.
Con: When used in conjunction with inner tubes, this drink has been known to cause alcohol-induced narcolepsy, which may result in severe sunburn
and/or waking up in Newport News.
Cox on the Beach
A spirited salute to a beloved local newscaster. Malibu Rum and decaf coffee served in a WWBT-12 coffee mug.
Pro: Makes you feel like an anchorman.
Con: May cause giggle fits during monkey stories.
This is basically the same old brand of domestic light beer with a brand new label. Not very exciting, but if you give it a chance, it will do its job.
Pro: Seems like a decent enough beer.
Con: Lacks the nutty, unpredictable flavor of Wilder Lager.
Celebrating one of the few semi-pro sports teams we have left. A soccer-inspired mix made with Red Bull, Guinness and vodka, garnished with a fresh divot of cleat sod.
Pro: Experts have been predicting that soccer will take America by storm any minute now; ordering this will put you way ahead of the Johnny-come-latelies.
Con: Hollering "Gimme a Kicker Punch!" in a crowded bar may lead to unfortunate injuries.