Rudolph Valentino was not someone you wanted to leave talking to your girlfriend (or indeed boyfriend) at a party.
Born in Italy as Rodolfo Pietro Filiberto Raffaello Guglielmi di Valentina d’Antonguella, even his full name was sexy.
The erogenous, androgenous Italian’s smouldering sexuality lit up the silent screen throughout the first half of the twenties. Labelled the Latin Lover by the film studios, Valentino was everything an American man wanted to be, but probably couldn’t – he could dance the tango, the cakewalk and the bunny bug; he could ride horses, he could sing, he wrote poetry and, while known to weep now and again, he was also a talented boxer who bopped other men on the nose really hard.
Chicks dig that shit.
When he died from appendicitis complications, aged just 31, thousands of tearful mourners lined the streets of New York and some women, so distraught by his death, took their own lives.
Which is a bit much.
Anyway, one of his most famous films, Blood & Sand (about a bullfighter with two birds on the go), shares its name with a well-known whisky drink that was first featured in Harry Craddock’s Savoy Cocktail Book back in 1930 – a drinking tome almost as influential as “The Thinking Drinkers Almanac” available at www.thinkingdrinkers.com
20ml Johnnie Walker Black whisky
20ml Peter Heering Cherry liqueur
20ml Sweet Vermouth
25ml Orange juice
Hard shake all the ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a flamed orange peel.