9 February

The Beatles conquered America

Macca Margarita

So we are drinking a...

Macca Margarita

On this day in 1964, the Beatles officially cracked America - making them still one of very few British bands to have achieved this difficult feat.

More than 73 million Americans - more than 40% of the population - tuned in to watch them perform live on the Ed Sullivan Show. How come? Well, Ed Sullivan, then a legendary host of a TV variety show, had been travelling through London when his plane was delayed by a gaggle of screaming girls. Wondering what all the fuss was about, he came across the Beatles. The Beatles' legendary manager Brian Epstein finagled his interest into three TV bookings and a signing with Capitol Records; by the time they finally made it onto the show, they were already number one.

We're toasting the Beatles, one of the all-time great British bands, with an Macca Margarita, named for one of the Fab Four, Sir Paul McCartney, who apparently likes his margaritas with a splash of freshly squeezed orange juice.

It's that Carmen Miranda's birthday

Carmen Miranda was born in a northern Portuguese village this day in 1909. When she was still a baby, her parents emigrated to Brazil and settled in Rio de Janeiro where her father opened up a barbershop. Before Carmen Miranda was discovered as a singer, she worked in a tie shop and then in a boutique where she learned to make hats. By 1946 she was Hollywood's highest-paid entertainer and the highest female taxpayer in the United States.

Miranda was nicknamed The Brazilian Bombshell, and was renowned for her sexy samba moves, her huge platforms and her enormous fruity hats. We wondered what drink we should be quaffing in remembrance of Miranda and decided that Fruits of the Forest reflected one of her headdresses, so might be a good one to at least kick off with.

The anniversary of Princess Margaret's Death

The original bad girl princess, Princess Margaret died on 9th February 2002, after a life dominated by an awe-inspiring consumption of nicotine and alcohol.

How awe-inspiring? Well... The Princess was the patron of the Girl Guides Association. In anticipation of her visits, the Guides had to keep a bottle of Famous Grouse scotch whisky on hand, with one Guide tasked with following her around the room holding an ashtray. Clearly, the lady had style. During and after her marriage to the photographer Anthony Armstrong-Jones she was an icon of the British 60s, hanging out with friends including Mick Jagger and Peter Sellers, and partying like a demon on the private island of Mustique.

Margarita is, of course, Spanish for Margaret, and a cocktail that goes down on tropical beaches the world over, not just Mustique. So we will be toasting the departed with a glass of Margarita served frozen.

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