The Whist Cocktail

We’re back to that venerable tome, the Savoy Cocktail Book. Today’s drink was, presumably, named after the card game. It utilizes two different spirits, something modern bartenders often frown upon, but a practice that was fairly common back in the Golden Age of cocktails. In this case, they are rum and calvados, a French apple brandy.…

The Nineteen Cocktail

This drink was almost certainly named after Paul Hardcastle’s 1985 hit single of the same name, the title of which referenced the average age of the American combat soldier in Vietnam. Oh no, wait. This drink came much earlier, first appearing in (as best I can tell) The Savoy Cocktail Book. A slightly different version (substituting…

The Victory Cocktail

Sometimes, when perusing old bartending guides, one happens upon a recipe that is just too intriguing to pass up. Sometimes these are drinks that sound like they’d be really good, but even more often they sound terrible. Whether they will be as terrible as they sound is pretty much what makes them worth trying. This…

The Mayfair Cocktail

This drink comes from Ted Saucier’s Bottoms Up, a postwar (1951) compendium of cocktails, and was created and served at the Claridge Hotel in Atlantic City. It bears almost no resemblance to a cocktail of the same name that appears in the Savoy Cocktail Book, apart from being made with gin. The Recipe: 2/3 gin 1/3 cherry…

The Savoy Tango

This drink was invented at the Savoy Hotel in London, perhaps by Harry Craddock himself, although the book only specifies that it was “a very great favourite” there. Perhaps tastes have changed, because this thing isn’t very good. In fact, I have yet to find much of anything featuring apple brandy to be especially good.…