The cocktail is a bit of a lost art. However, as we all experiment with ever-more effective ways of ridding ourselves of those pesky brain cells in anticipation of the coming end-of-days, it should come as no surprise that mixologists have been busy in their laboratories creating new and exciting ways to numb us. My advice to you is that as you begin to stock up on plastic jugs of water, batteries and freeze-dried beef stroganoff, it might also be wise to make sure that your liquor cabinet is well provisioned with gin, tequila, chambord and Everclear, among other things. Imagine getting caught short on Goldschlager moments before a plague of locusts — the idea simply haunts me, I can tell you.

With hopes of helping all of you with your fallout shelter shopping lists, here, then, are the top 10 13 best “end-of-world” cocktails:

13. Red Devil. Most forms of apocalypse either begin or end with a red devil of some kind. Take 2 oz. of Irish whiskey, 1-1/2 oz. of clam juice, 1-1/2 oz. tomato juice, a dash of Worcestershire, 1/4 oz. fresh lime juice and a pinch of pepper and toss it up in a highball glass with ice.

12. The Blackout. Combine 1 oz. fresh lime juice, 1-1/2 oz. gin, and 3/4 oz. of blackberry brandy, shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. If you take your shaker and roll it out on the top of your bar like a rolling pin, you could conceivably call this a Rolling Blackout. Just a thought.

11. Dark and Stormy. This one has a long tradition of being consumed prior to (and during) hurricanes and tropical storms — and certainly the name conjures up precisely the kind of eerie, pre-catastrophic atmosphere that most of the Old Masters, from Hieronymus Bosch to Michelangelo, were going for when they depicted the ‘Last Judgment.’ Mix 2 oz. of rum with 3 oz. of ginger beer, and garnish with a lime wedge.

10. Death in the Afternoon. Oh, that it could only be this painless. Pour 1-1/2 oz. of anis-flavored liqueur (pastis will do, but absinthe will add a note of the forbidden) into a 6 oz. champagne glass, and fill the rest with champagne.

9. Massacre. Most prophets of doom agree that this little number is more likely to be an apt prelude to Armageddon than a quiet, bubbly Death in the Afternoon. Shake the following with ice, and strain into a cocktail glass: 2 oz. tequila, 1 teaspoon of Campari and 4 oz. of ginger ale.

8. Apocalypse Now. Certainly the name is a reference to the Coppola film, but enough of these at one barstool sitting can certainly lead one to believe that the end is near (please note — I recommend drinking responsibly until it is absolutely clear that the Apocalypse is upon us). Throw a half ounce each of tequila and dry vermouth into a shot glass, stir well, and pour another 1/2 oz. of Irish cream on top.

7. Southern Bound Meteor. This’ll knock you out of orbit. Combine 1/2 oz. of Southern Comfort and 1/2 oz. of Goldschlager in a shot glass; drop in a stemless cherry; float a splash of 151 proof rum on top. Light on fire and serve. Experts advise putting out the fire before drinking. (Makes one wonder what is in a Northern Bound Meteor. Canadian ice wine, perhaps?)

6. The Last Round. A dry and subtle valedictory — a thinking drinker’s final curtain. Stir the following with ice and strain: 1 oz. gin, 1 oz. dry vermouth, 1/4 oz. brandy and 1/4 oz. pastis.

5. The Zombie. Nearly 100 zombie movies positively assert that our end could come by way of flesh-eating, reanimated corpses. While we await the science to back up this theory, try combining juice of limes, lemons, pineapples and oranges, some Da Vinci Gourmet Caribbean Falernum syrup and a little passion fruit syrup, some light and dark rum and some apricot brandy, and garnish it with a chunk of pineapple, a sprig of mint or a cherry. Just keeping track of the ingredients will keep your mind off dead cannibals for a short time, I should think.

4. H-Bomb. We might assume that classified technology has outpaced this thermonuclear device, that more ingenious ways of destroying humanity have been devised; but in the meantime, this little number can stand in for all forms of nuclear destruction. Take 1/2 oz. of yellow chartreuse, 1/2 oz. of green chartreuse, 3/4 oz. of brandy and 3/4 oz. of bourbon, shake with ice, pour, and stand back.

3. The Anti-Christ. When a Red Devil just won’t do. Throw some Everclear, some 151 proof rum and some Absolut Peppar in a shot glass with 3 dashes of Tabasco, and soon you’ll be sweating sixes.

2. Judgement Day. The closer you get to the end, the more Everclear you’ll need. Combine 1 oz. of Kahlua, 1 oz. of Jagermeister, 1 oz. of peppermint schnapps, 1/2 oz. of 151 proof rum and a half ounce of Everclear. Best to have your affairs in order before consuming.

1. Hell. 1-1/2 ounces of brandy and a half ounce of creme de menthe. What a coincidence — that’s my idea of hell, too.

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