A Very Special Cocktail Corner, featuring a Toast to Turandot!

To celebrate Turandot's thrilling return to the Met stage later this month, we have a special treat from chorister Sara Heaton's husband, Justin Keller! Justin, a talented mixologist and accomplished musician, was titillated by Turandot's slightly gruesome undertones, so he created an appropriate cocktail to pair with the evening. Enjoy responsibly, and try not to spill blood on your shirt...

 A cocktail fit for an ice princess hell-bent on beheading her suitors. Or, you know, just a nice drink for a Friday evening. Either works. 

A cocktail fit for an ice princess hell-bent on beheading her suitors. Or, you know, just a nice drink for a Friday evening. Either works. 

Here's what Justin has to say about his delicious creation:

"I was honored with the task of coming up with this. Hope it does the trick!

I got the plot summary from Sara. Sounds like things start off bitter and bloody, and end sweetly.

So, I basically made an extra bitter negroni (I added some lime juice, and used dry vermouth) and shook it with an egg white. That way there was foam on which to drip some “blood.” It’s poured over a berry jam sitting at the bottom, which gives a sweet finish to what was a pretty bracing drink."


1 1/2 oz gin
1 oz Campari (gotta have something Italian in there!)
1 oz dry vermouth
1/2 oz lime juice
1 egg white
Dark berry jam
“Blood” (dark berry jelly, sans seeds, mixed with angostura bitters)

Dry shake everything except the jam and “blood,” then shake with ice and pour over a small dollop of jam. Gently place a few drops of “blood” on the foam.


Sara and Justin pic.JPG

Justin Keller is a teacher, lecturer in Jazz & Classical music history, and an accomplished freelance multi-instrumentalist who has performed with such varied artists as Sufjan Stevens and Gunther Schuller, among countless others. His wife, Sara Heaton, joined the extra chorus in 2011, and became a full-time member in 2016. The two lovebirds live in Beacon, NY, and love hiking, cooking, and, of course, mixology. You can learn more about Justin here and here.