5 Prohibition Cocktails For Your Next Vintage Event

July 3, 2016 11:38 am | Make a Comment

Prohibition Cocktails

Our last post about the prohibition speakeasy got us thinking about original prohibition cocktails. What cocktails were served and drunk in speakeasy bars across New York during this time?

The prohibition was the great heyday for creative cocktails, a 13-year span where the allure of outlawed liquor inspired waves of colorful concoctions that offered glamour and good taste.

We have searched the web to bring you five of the best prohibition cocktails to serve at your next vintage event. Minus the tainted liquor, of course!

Bee’s Knees

The phrase “bee’s knees” was prohibition-era slang for “the best.” In that time, the addition of ingredients such as citrus and honey were often used to cover the less than ideal smell and taste of bathtub gin. Improving the taste of an inferior gin may have been the goal, but the result was a fantastic concoction that can hold its own today.

How To Make

  1. 2 oz gin
  2. 3/4 oz fresh lemon juice
  3. 3/4 oz honey syrup
  4. Garnish with a lemon twist

Add all the ingredients to your shaker except for the garnish. Shake with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Hanky Panky

This saucy cocktail was created from mixology master Ada Coleman, a well-regarded bartender at The Hotel Savoy in London. Highly regarded as her biggest claim to fame, the Hanky Panky was created to appease the thirst of a celebrated but exhausted actor Sir Charles Hawtrey. Coleman said the name came from Hawtrey’s exclamation on taking his first sip, “By Jove! That is the real hanky-panky!”

How To Make

  1. 2 dashes Fernet Branca
  2. ½ Italian Vermouth
  3. ½ Dry Gin

Add all the ingredients to the shaker, except for the orange peel. Shake well with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Squeeze orange peel on top.

Mary Pickford

This fruity cocktail is named after the 1920s movie star Mary Pickford. Pickford is said to have favored this cocktail created for her on a trip to Cuba, where rum was far easier to come by.

How To Make

  1. 2 oz white rum
  2. 1 oz pineapple juice
  3. Dash of grenadine
  4. Dash of maraschino liqueur

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add all the ingredients. Shake and strain into a martini glass with a pineapple wedge.

Corpse Reviver

This cocktails motto was “cheers to the hair of the dog that bit you.” The Corpse Reviver was meant as a hangover cure – because it was said to revive your corpse. It was essentially seen as medicinal in its earliest days. However, the Corpse Reviver cemented its place in the Prohibition era by being catalogued in the 1930s Savoy Cocktail Handbook.

How To Make

  1. 25ml gin
  2. 25ml triple sec
  3. 25ml vermouth
  4. 25ml fresh lemon juice
  5. 4ml absinthe

Add all the ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well then strain into a Martini glass and garnish with a lemon twist.

Gin Rickey

The Gin Rickey’s earliest incarnation favored bourbon over gin. But the shift to gin in the 1920s is believed to have occurred because bathtub gin was more readily available, as it required no aging. F. Scott Fitzgerald was a fan of the revised Gin Rickey, referencing it in a pivotal scene in The Great Gatsby.

How To Make

  • 2 oz gin
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Club soda
  • Lime wedge for garnish

Add the gin and lime juice into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well and strain into a highball glass full of fresh ice. Top with club soda and garnish with a lime wedge.


 

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