Waking this topic from the dead (sorry!) for a wonderful excerpt from Hemingway's "For Whom The Bell Tolls":
"What drink is that?" the gypsy asked.
"A medicine," Robert Jordan said. "Do you want to taste it?"
"What is it for?"
"For everything," Robert Jordan said. "It cures everything. If you have anything wrong this will cure it."
"Let me taste it," the gypsy said.
Robert Jordan pushed the cup toward him. It was a milky yellow now with the water and he hoped the gypsy would not take more than a swallow. There was very little of it left and one cup of it took the place of the evening papers, of all the old evenings in cafés, of all chestnut trees that would be in bloom now in this month, of the great slow horses of the outer boulevards, of book shops, of kiosques, and of galleries, of the Parc Montsouris, of the Stade Buffalo, and of the Butte Chaumont, of the Guaranty Trust Company and the Ile de la Cité, of Foyot's old hotel, and of being able to read and relax in the evening; of all the things he had enjoyed and forgotten and that came back to him when he tasted that opaque, bitter, tongue-numbing, brain-warming, stomach-warming, idea-changing liquid alchemy.