[INTERFACING] [Easy: Success]
A new blog post appears. You catch a whiff of beetroot.
Disco Elysium is one helluva game… it’s just disco, my absolute GOTY 2019. It’s a slow-cooker stew of hilarious writing, tabletop RPG mechanics, and political commentary. You play as Harry Du Bois, an addict detective trying to solve a murder he’s too hungover to recall. It’s a breath of fresh air for dialogue choices, characterization and even its depiction of alcohol. So today we’re brewing a tribute cocktail to a side quest called “the *special* borscht”.
The story of our brew begins in the smelly kitchen of Whirling-In-Rags. As Harry greets the cafeteria’s cook, the two men face a language barrier. Having failed a [LOGIC] skill check, Harry assumes the cook’s name to be Gorący Kubek. What’s funny is that “gorący kubek” is really Polish for instant soup, which the cook is stirring for the Dock Union workers. Yep.
But Mr. Kubek has a darker secret brewing in that pot.
The detectives eventually find a note about a “Special Whirling Borscht”, while Easy Leo says that “the borscht keeps [the workers] happy and in fighting spirits”. So we return to our hearty Polish cook and confront him:
Keep spiking the borscht to quell the unrest? Or screw the Union bigwigs and let the workers revolt? Now that’s a dilemma for you to deal with. I’ll get down to making Gorący’s tribute brew.
There’s one key ingredient to this. No, not just vodka.
Beetroot shrub! Gorący’s special barszcz is essentially beet soup laden with vodka, but we’ve elevated it for the Union (wo)men. Enter the shrub; a zingy vinegar-based drink infused with vegetables, fruits or berries. What started as a prescription from scurvy in the 15th century, is now a trending additive to sodas and cocktails. Beetroot is staple to traditional Lithuanian cuisine, mostly kept popular by our beloved cold beet soup, aka “šaltibarščiai”. So I was pretty thrilled to reinvent this vegetable as a shrub, following this recipe.
Note that this a case of acquired taste, but let’s roll the dice!
Skill check… [CONCEPTUALIZATION] [Medium: Success].
60 ml (2 oz) Polish Vodka
30 ml (1 oz) Beetroot Shrub
90 ml (3 oz) Ginger Beer
Garnish: Beetroot and Potato Crisps
Garnish: Thyme Blossoms
- Pre-chill a copper mug in the freezer. I’d actually chilled all the ingredients for extra heat resistance this summer.
- Fill the mug halfway with larger chunks of ice.
- Add vodka and beetroot shrub straight to the mug. Stir once to incorporate.
- Pour ginger beer over the brew. I specifically chose one with muddled lime, but that sour note can be added with a dash of lime juice.
- Top the cocktail with crushed ice and a few drops of the shrub.
- Garnish with some vegetable chips and/or thyme blossoms. Psst… I’d considered garnishing with dry ramen and its spices for the Gorący reference 🙂 But this turned out pwettier.
- Add skill points to [ELECTROCHEMISTRY] and go to party planet!
Suggested Sipping Soundtrack:
The chilled tune that plays in Gorący’s cafeteria:
Post-punk’ish indie vibes from the band behind Disco Elysium’s OST:
So whether you’re a Superstar Cop, a Hobocop or even a Cop of the Apocalypse, I hope this cocktail keeps you disco. Lemme know what your Ancient Reptilian Brain thinks!
Thirsty for a few more game cocktails? 🙂
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