Hair of the Dog – Drinks for the day after

Hair of the Dog – Drinks for the day after

Hungover from last night? There is a class of cocktails that is supposed to make you feel better again: Hair of the Dog-drinks. Here is what you should know about this alleged hangover-cure.

Een décke Kapp vu gëschter Owend? Eng Kategorie vu Cocktails versprécht ze hëllefen, dass et engem erëm besser geet: d’Hair of the Dog (op Lëtzebuergesch iwwersat: Hondshoer)– Cocktails. Hei ass am Wesentlechen dat, wat et iwwert dëst angeblecht Géigemëttel ze wësse gëtt.

The expression ‘hair of the dog’ is believed to have entered the English language in Scotland where it has been a folkloric belief that certain illnesses could be treated with a part of the very same thing that caused them in the first place. When somebody got bitten by a dog, it was common practice to treat the injury by putting some hair from this same dog onto the wound as to prevent inflammations and diseases such as the rabies. You had to use ‘the hair of the dog that bit you’. This belief though was not only limited to Scotland. The same idea can be found in a piece of literature by French author Rabelais in his La vie de Gargantua et de Pantagruel from the 16th century.

D’Hondshoer als Expressioun huet et wahrscheinlech a Schottland an déi Englesch Sprooch gepackt, wou d’Leit fréier gegleeft hunn, dass ee verschidde Krankheeten heele kann, an deem een ee Stéck vun deem wat een iwwerhaapt krank gemaach huet benotzt, fir entgéint ze wierken. Wann ee vun engem Hond gebass gouf, war et eng gängeg Praxis e puer Hoer vu genee deem Hond an d’Wond ze leeën, fir Entzündungen a Krankheeten ewéi d’Tollwut präventiv ze behandelen. Heifir  gouf also gesot et misst een ‘the hair of the dog that bit you’, also d’Hoer vum Hond deen dech gebass huet benotzen. Dës Iwwerzeegung gouf et awer net nëmme a Schottland. Am 16. Jorhonnert a Frankräich huet de Rabelais a sengem La vie de Gargantua et de Pantagruel déi selwecht Iddi benotzt.

Even though this logic might sound strange, it is applied in modern medicine under the form of vaccines and antivenoms, which are both produced from the original pathogen or venom respectively. Another school of thought that relies on this idea is homeopathy where diseases are being treated with very small doses of the same substance that causes them originally.

Och wann dës Logik vläicht komesch schéngt, sou gëtt et dëst awer och an der moderner Medezin. Sou ginn Impfungen a Géigegëfter aus dem Erreeger bzw. dem Gëft selwer hiergestallt. Och d’Homeopathie follegt dëser Logik. Krankheete solle mat ganz klengen Dose vun der selwechter Substanz geheelt ginn, déi eben och dës Krankheet ausléist.

Applied to the nasty consequences of a night out with a few drinks to many, this would mean that a hangover would best be cured with another alcoholic drink. Strangely though, there is another link between alcohol and the hair of the dog, not referring to this method of fighting fire with fire. Dog hair were among the ingredients in a more than 3000 years old recipe for a hangover cure that was found in the ancient port city of Ugarit on the shore of what is now Syria.

Am Fall vun engem décke Kapp no enger Nuecht mat e puer Pätt zevill uwennt, géif dat deemno heeschen, dass een hei am beschten Alkohol drop drénke sollt. Komescherweis gëtt et awer nach een anere Lien tëschent engem Hangover-Géigemëttel an den Hondshoer, an zwar an enger Aart a Weis, déi näischt domat ze dinn huet Feier mat Feier ze bekämpfen. Hondshoer goufen als Ingredient an engem Rezept fonnt, wat méi wéi 3000 Joer al ass an an der aller Hafestad Ugarit, am haitege Syrien, fonnt gouf.

The modern Hair of the Dog-cocktails feature either fresh fruit juice, coffee or chilli, to boost your metabolism with a wake-up kick. But even alcohol can have a shot-term healing effect. In Luxembourg and Germany, you have a ‘counter-beer’ and in Austria and Denmark a ‘repair-beer’ on the day after. It can rid you of the headache and pump you up with a few happiness hormones which come from a spike in blood sugar. However, all it does really, is delaying the hangover.

Déi modern Hair of the Dog-Cocktailer enthalen entweder frësche Jus, Kaffi oder Chilli, fir de Stoffwiessel mat engem Coup unzekuerbelen. Mee souguer den Alkohol selwer kann dozou féieren, dass een sech wärend kuerzer Zäit nees besser spiert. A Lëtzebuerg an an Däitschland drénke mer deen Dag duerno ee Konter-Béier, an Éisterräich an an Dänemark drénken se ee Reparéier-Béier. E kann de Bluttzockerspigel kuerzzäiteg erhéijen a sou Gléckshormoner ausschëdden. Trotzdem, alles wat dëst bewierkt, ass den Hangover no hannen ze verleeën.

Back to the cocktails though. The Hair of the Dog-drinks came into existence in the mid-19th century and were particularly prominent in hotel bars where a new range of these cocktails was created: Corpse Revivers. Their popularity peaked in the 1930s. The only ones that are still somewhat relevant nowadays are the Corpse Revivers #2 and #3 because it contains lemon juice. Most of the other creations only contain alcoholic ingredients, which does not make for a credible cure.

Zréck zu de Cocktails. D‘Hair of the Dog-Drinks goufen an der Mëtt vum 19. Jorhonnert kreéiert a ware virun allem an Hotel-Bars beléift. Do gouf dann och eng nei Zocht Cocktails erfonnt: d’Corpse Revivers, also sou eppes wéi Läichenoperstoungsmëttel. Hir Glanzzäit waren d‘30er Joren. Déi eenzeg déi hautdesdaags nach eenegermoosse relevant sinn, sinn d‘Corpse Reviverën #2 an #3 well se mat Zitrounejus gemaach ginn. Déi meescht aner Versiounen hunn nëmmen alkoholesch Ingredienten, wat se net ganz glaafwierdeg als Anti-Hangover-Mëttel erschénge loossen.

Here are some of the most popular examples you can find on contemporary bar menus (the beneficial ingredient(s) in brackets):

-          Bloody Mary (tomato juice)

-          Corpse Reviver #2 (lemon juice)

-          Corpse Reviver #3 (lemon juice)

-          Fog Cutter #1 (orange & lemon juice)

-          Fog Cutter #2 (lime juice)

-          Hair of the Dog (hot chili sauce)

-          Irish coffee (coffee)

-          Mimosa (orange juice)

-          Silver Fizz (lemon juice)

Hei sinn e puer vun deene beléiftsten Exemplairen déi een op enger zäitgenëssescher Cocktailkaart fanne kann (mat deenen Ingredienten déi tatsächlech eng positiv Wierkung hunn a Klammeren):

-          Bloody Mary (Tomatejus)

-          Corpse Reviver #2 (Zitrounejus)

-          Corpse Reviver #3 (Zitrounejus)

-          Fog Cutter #1 (Orangen- an Zitrounejus)

-          Fog Cutter #2 (Limettejus)

-          Hair of the Dog (Schaarf Chillizooss)

-          Irish coffee (Kaffi)

-          Mimosa (Orangëjus)

-          Silver Fizz (Zitrounejus)

In Craft Corner we chose the Savoy-version of the Corpse Reviver #2 for our cocktail menu: gin, Lillet blanc, Cointreau and lemon juice, served in a glass that has been rinsed with Absinth. In case you want to try out the Hair of the Dog-effect after your next night out, you know where to find us!

Am Craft Corner hu mer de Corpse Reviver #2 an der Versioun vum Savoy-Hotel fir eis Cocktailskaart erausgewielt: Gin, Lillet blanc, Cointreau an Zitrounejus, an engem Glas zervéiert wat mat Absinth ausgespullt gouf. Wann s du den Hair of the Dog-Eeffekt selwer ausprobéiere wëlls, weess du wou mer ze fanne sinn!

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