The Midas Touch

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Story by Liesel Schmidt

Gold.
It’s long been considered a treasure, a precious metal that people have fought wars over, traversed thousands of miles in search of, spent countless hours seeking. And while most people think of it in the form of jewelry, it’s become quite the trend to incorporate gold into food and drink, fancifying these consumable creations and elevating them to a whole new level.

Like most trends, the concept of gold consumption is not new. In fact, it’s got some very ancient roots, tracing back all the way to the times of the Egyptian pharaohs, when gold was often ingested for the purification of mind, body, and soul. Eastern cultures have also been in on the idea for centuries, using gold leaf as a decorative garnish for their food and beverages in addition to believing it to have effective healing properties. And in 16thcentury Europe, the nobility often decorated their food with it because it was believed to supplement health and longevity. Gold leaf was also added to drinks by alchemists to soothe sore limbs.

Clearly, the idea of little flakes of gold floating in a drink are hardly novel. But instead of breaking out the 24-karat because of its medicinal properties, we now do it…just because. We want that drink to be OTT, something absolutely unique and fabulous. And what’s more luxurious and extravagant when we’re wanting to go all out than GOLD? Not much. And the Instagram factor is off the charts. The key, of course, is choosing a cocktail or alcoholic beverage that lends itself well to the gold leaf, something whose color and transparency will allow the metal to shine through. Think clear alcohols like gin, schnapps, vodka, and—of course—champagne (Hello, champs and gold? What’s not to love?). Depending on the type of look you’re going for, you can float them in the drink or rim the glass. Whatever you do, you’ve got gold-level lavishness.

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