Pépa Bonafé was a silent screen star in Europe from 1913 to 1929. According to IMDB, she was in twenty eight films, from shorts to feature length films like Capriccio Fatale (1916) and Redenzione (1919). She was known for her work in some Shakespeare stories, and referred to in some places as a comedienne. What she seems to be best known for, however, is being the subject of an Art Deco poster by Jean Carlu. He was a well established French artist and graphic designer when he lost his drawing arm in an accident in 1918. After a period where he learned to draw with his other hand, he dove right back into graphic design, becoming one of the first artists to recognize that strong colors and bold lines could help fix advertisements in the minds of the viewer. He designed an iconic poster for Chateau Mouton Rothschild, as well as working with the American government on posters for World War II.
Saveur Magazine was established in 1994, so they are just old enough to drink. They have been exploring cuisine and cocktails in all of its various forms, and doing it well. The magazine has won eighteen James Beard Awards for journalism. Pépa first appeared in their December 2011 article on Cognac cocktails by David Wondrich. They are going to continue to be a forward outpost for all things culinary and epicurean, so pay attention to what they are exploring.
Pépa (by Saveur Magazine)
1.5 oz./ 45 mL dry vermouth
1 oz./ 30 mL cognac
1 oz./ 30 mL vodka
1 ds. Angostura bitters
Glass: Chilled Cocktail
Garnish: Lemon Twist
Pour all of the ingredients in a mixing tin. Add ice, then shake for 20-30 seconds. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass, twist the lemon over the drink. Add the peel to the cocktail and serve.
This one reminds me of a wet Martini, which I am a fan of. It is very vermouth forward, so make sure you select one you enjoy. The cognac provides your tongue a smooth ride at end after the burst of citrus and herbs right at the beginning. Almost like it is preparing you for the next sip. I am guessing much like the actress this is named after, it is a little known gem. Hopefully as the popularity of vermouth and vermouth cocktails start to build, this one becomes famous.