Warning: Spoilers everywhere!
Every rose has its thorns...
Season 7, Episode 3: The Queen's Justice
We all know who was the real Queen in Westeros, am I right? Let us all take a moment to remember Lady Olenna of House Tyrell, also known as the Queen of Thorns. Despite being one of the tamer deaths on Game of Thrones, Lady Olenna still manages to go out fighting, dropping bombs on her way out. Even as she faces her own death, we feel no pity for her - we instead feel a bit sorry for Jaime, indeed anyone who finds themselves on the receiving end of those sharp and punishing thorns. This week we pour one out for the Queen of Thorns with a royal cocktail scented with roses and hiding a dangerous edge.
The Kir is a French aperitif originating from Dijon, in the Burgundy region of France. Popularized in the 1940s to promote the locally produced creme de cassis, a blackcurrant liqueur, and the local white wine, the Kir has since spawned a number of variations using cider, vermouth, ale, and the most famous - the Kir Royale - made with champagne, fit for royalty.
The Queen of Thorns cocktail, based on the Kir Royale, starts with the classic creme de cassis and a nice dry champagne. Luxurious and easy drinking, this bubbly cocktail feels especially indulgent. But a drink named for the Queen of Thorns must be more than just beautiful and easy. A shot of gin (we love Bombay Sapphire) infused with pink peppercorns keeps it from becoming a little too...boring. A few drops of rosewater added to each glass gives just the slightest hint of summer in Highgarden. Served with lemon cakes and some cheese, perhaps a plate of figs, this aperitif is pretty enough for any garden party but strong enough to loosen tongues, if need be. It knows how to get its own way, and we think Lady Olenna would approve.
With its deep crimson blush and its heady mix of blackcurrant, peppercorn, and roses, it is easy to be lulled by its beauty and sweetness. But lest you underestimate this pretty little rose, the mix of gin, liqueur and champagne can hit hard before anyone begins to notice, leaving you to deal with the consequences in the morning. Much like the late Lord Tyrell, we imagine. In her own words, "I was good. I was very, very good." We absolutely agree. So raise your glass to the Queen of Thorns, Lady Olenna of House Tyrell. We shall not look upon her like again. Enjoy (but carefully).
The Queen of Thorns