In honor of Charles Tanqueray's 200th birthday today, we thought we'd mention one of the better brand name checks in recent cinema, delivered by Julianne Moore as Charley in "A Single Man". When the quietly distraught (but impeccably attired) Colin Firth's George calls the elegant, boozy mess Charley to ask what he should bring over for dinner, she asks him to pick up some gin. "Get Tanqueray--I love the green bottle." If this reference didn't come from a deal with Tanqueray it should have, and either way it's just great. Moore's melancholy single woman rightly pines for a pretty bottle, and Tanqueray's piney, classic gin-yness is exactly what you drink when you stay up all night and can barely wait to call your friends when they wake up, desperate for human contact. True glamour! In honor of Moore we're renaming Tanqueray's own very precise G & T recipe, just for the day, and tailoring it ever so slightly to suit her character.
MOORE & TONIC
4 oz tonic water
Fresh lime wedges
Squeeze the juice of a lime wedge into the bottom of a tapered high-ball glass.
Fill the glass two-thirds with ice, then add the 1.25 oz of Tanqueray. Stir well.
Run a wedge of lime around the rim of the glass so that the fresh smell and taste of citrus greets you as you sip.
Drop a fresh lime wedge into the glass.
Drink all night, wait until 7 a.m., start calling friends.
Both drunk and dishevelled as well as beautifully put together, Moore looks smashing in the film, and the dreamy, lost vulnerability she invests the character with puts this performance into the pantheon of great drunks of cinema.
Below, the scene everyone comments on, where Moore is applying her war paint, one eye at a time. And ordering up a fresh bottle of Tanqueray.
And making calls after a long night, martini shaker by the bed.
Moore's hairstyles for the film were designed by Alan D'Angerio, as accomplished a key hairstylist as there is--and someone whose body of work makes you question why the Academy doesn't have a Best Hair award. Seriously. The man did "Goodfellas", "Casino" (yes, he created Ginger's hairstyles), "Shutter Island", "Rachel Getting Married", "Silence of the Lambs" and "Revolutionary Road" to name just a few. He's also designed Moore's hair for other films like "The Hours" and "Far From Heaven". If there were a category for Best Hair D'Angerio would be getting a Lifetime Achievement at this point, and should have received a Special Oscar for Moore's elaborate, many-tiered 'do in "A Single Man".
In honor of the great moment of much-needed release in the film where Moore puts Booker T & The M.G.s "Green Onions" on the hi-fi and she and Firth dance around in her living room, give the song a listen below. And make yourself a T & T in Moore's and Mr. Tanqueray's honor.