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All cocktail photos and written content for Drinking and Thinking... © 2019 by Dave Hebb

Midnight Cicada

Dark and bittersweet like the end of summer...


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Ahhh, the sound of the cicadas on a late August midnight… Cocktails have a way of transporting us to a time and place, but they are best served IN that time and place. Tonight’s the night!

This one came about as I tried a similar recipe published on Imbibe Magazine’s website, but found it too sweet and lacking body. My version adds some dark spiced rum, in this case I used Cruzan Blackstrap rum instead of cachaça, but I suspect that any darker black spiced rum would work. I wouldn’t use a good aged rum, but maybe it’s worth trying too. I also added a bit of lemon and my favorite orange flower water. I think this is super yummy and despite my sunny photo I recommend drinking it on a warm humid summer night on the porch where you can hear all the insects playing their symphony.  Drinking this reminds me of yet another wonderful painting, this one by a slightly lesser known artist than Picasso or Matisse: Charles Burchfield. This is a watercolor, if you can believe it, and as with most of Burchfield’s work is about expressing the sound and energy of nature:



Charles Burchfield, Sphinx and Milky Way, 1946

As I look at those wild curvy lines in the night sky I can almost hear the cicadas humming. Burchfield was also a fan of modern classical music, his favorite being Sibelius, but I think of Stravinsky. Choose your own favorite and use this cocktail as a way to drink in that dark night and let the hum slowly move up into your head…


  • 1 ½ oz. Cynar

  • 1 oz. Nocino

  • 1 oz. Blackstrap rum

  • ¼ oz. fresh squeezed lemon

  • Dash orange flower water (garnish)

  • lemon twist (express and garnish)

  • Orange twist (express and garnish)


Stir liquor and lemon with ice, strain, pour over rocks, garnish.

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