The traditional Blue Blazer was created by bartender Jerry Thomas in San Francisco in the mid 1800s, combining whisky or rum, boiling water, sugar and lemon peel. The ingredients themselves were nothing of note; it was rather the process of mixing the drink that was the real highlight. Thomas made the cocktail by lighting the whisky on fire and then pouring the contents back and forth between two metal cups while maintaining a long blue flame (hence the name). Legend has it that Thomas would only make the drink if the outside temperature was below 50 degrees and would only make it for customers who were ill, as he believed the drink to have healing or medicinal properties.
Fields delectable variation of the Blazer uses Inner Circle Navy Proof dark rum, organic dark chocolate, chocolate liqueur and a flame. Mixed using Thomas’ original method, these modern ingredients are again lit and poured between cups creating a rich, hot chocolate-like beverage.
So, despite the Australian Open being held in mid-January (the height of Melbourne summer when the weather is scorching hot), if you’re after a delicious, quality quasi-Australian cocktail, skillfully made at the place of its creation- head to 1806 and ask for the cockle-warming Black Blazer (and have your camera ready).