Fun anecdotes about the cocktails on the list for Megaro Bar.
Barrel Aged Cocktails
Monkey Shoulder Whiskey | Dolin Vermouth Rouge | Maraschino Angostura Bitters | Peychaud’s Bitters 9
The Rob Roy was created at the famous New York City Waldorf-Astoria in the 1890’s. As is the case with many classic cocktails of the time, this one debuted along with the 1894 Broadway show, “Rob Roy,” which told the story of Robert Roy MacGregor, the Scottish Robin Hood of the 18th-century.
BARREL AGED COCKTAILS
Knob Creek Rye | Antica Formula | Campari | Orange Bitters 9.5
The Boulevardier, appeared in Harry’s 1927 bar guide, Barflies and Cocktails. It was the signature drink of Erskine Gwynne, expatriate writer, socialite and nephew of railroad tycoon Alfred Vanderbilt. Gwynne edited a monthly magazine, a sort of Parisian New Yorker, named The Boulevardier.
Barrel Aged Cocktails
Tanqueray Gin | Maraschino | Green Chartreuse | Lime Juice 9
The first publication in which The Last Word appeared was Ted Saucier’s classic 1951 cocktail book Bottoms Up!. In it Saucier states that the cocktail was first served around 30 years earlier in the Detroit Athletic Club and attributes its creation to Frank Fogarty, who later introduced it to New York as well
Tanqueray Gin | Lemon Juice | Sugar | Fizz 9.5
The drink dates to World War I, and an early form was created in 1915 at the New York Bar in Paris—later Harry’s New York Bar—by barman Harry MacElhone. The combination was said to have such a kick that it felt like being shelled with the powerful French 75mm field gun
Remy Martin VSOP | Angostura Bitters | Sugar | Fizz 9.5
A recipe for the cocktail appears as early as “Professor” Jerry Thomas’ Bon Vivant’s Companion (1862), which omits the brandy or cognac and is considered to be the “classic” American version
Peach Puree | Prosecco Fizz 9.5
The Bellini was invented sometime between 1934 and 1948 by Giuseppe Cipriani, founder of Harry’s Bar in Venice, Italy. He named the drink the Bellini because its unique pink colour reminded him of the toga of a saint in a painting by 15th-century Venetian artist Giovanni Bellini.
Death in the Afternoon
Absinthe | Sugar | Fizz 9.5
Also called the Hemingway or the Hemingway Champagne, is a cocktail made up of absinthe and Champagne invented by Ernest Hemingway. The cocktail shares a name with Hemingway’s book Death in the Afternoon, and the recipe was published in So Red the Nose, or Breath in the Afternoon, 1935 cocktail book with contributions from famous authors. Hemingway’s original instructions were:
“Pour one jigger absinthe into a Champagne glass. Add iced Champagne until it attains the proper opalescent milkiness. Drink three to five of these slowly.
SHORT DRINK COCKTAILS
Wild Turkey Rye Whiskey | Remy Martin VSOP | Sugar | Peychaud’s Bitters | La Fontaine Absinthe 10
In 1838, Antoine Amedie Peychaud, owner of a New Orleans apothecary, treated his friends to brandy toddies of his own recipe, including his “Peychaud’s Bitters,” made from a secret family recipe. The toddies were made using a double-ended egg cup as a measuring cup or jigger, then known as a “coquetier” (pronounced “ko-k-tay”), from which the word “cocktail” was derived. Thus, the world’s first cocktail was born!
By 1850, the Sazerac Cocktail, made with Sazerac French brandy and Peychaud’s Bitters, was immensely popular, and became the first “branded” cocktail. In 1873, the recipe for the Sazerac Cocktail was altered to replace the French brandy with American Rye whiskey, and a dash of absinthe was added.
Short Drink Cocktails
Tanqueray Gin | Lemon Juice | Sugar | Crème De Mure 9
The Bramble was created in London, in 1984 by Dick Bradsell. At the time, Bradsell worked at a bar in Soho called Fred’s Club, and he wanted to create a British cocktail. Memories of going “blackberrying” in his childhood on the Isle of Wight provided the inspiration for the Bramble.
Short Drinks Cocktails
Hendrick’s Corpse Reviver
Hendrick’s Gin | Cointreau | Lillet | Lemon Juice | La Fontaine Absinthe 2 for 20
In 1889, a charming slang dictionary describes a “Corpse-reviver” as “a dram of spirits” with an example of usage from The Sporting Times: “There was a general rush for wet towels and corpse-revivers.” The term covered a very diverse group of mixed drinks, mostly intended to be hair of the dog remedies. Usage can be seen as early as 1861 in London’s Punch magazine.
LONG DRINK COCKTAILS
Dark & Stormy
Sailor Jerry Rum | Lime Juice | Sugar | Ginger Beer 9
In 1806, the Mercury, a chartered English clipper commandeered by James Gosling managed to avoid that fearsome coral reef, steering the ship onto Bermuda’s shores after 91 days at sea, their charter having run out.
The Goslings would become one of the most prominent families on the island, entering the rum production business in 1857. Ginger beer, another favourite drink of the British, was also produced on the island, among other places at a factory operated as a subsidiary to the Royal Naval Officer’s Club.
It didn’t take a genius to realize that Gosling’s molasses-y Black Seal rum (named for the wax used to seal bottles) was the perfect complement to the piquant bite of ginger beer. The Dark ‘n’ Stormy was born.
azerac Cocktail, made with Sazerac French brandy and Peychaud’s Bitters, was immensely popular, and became the first “branded” cocktail. In 1873, the recipe for the Sazerac Cocktail was altered to replace the French brandy with American Rye whiskey, and a dash of absinthe was added.
Long Drink Cocktails
Tanqueray Gin | Sangue Morlacco | Cointreau | Benedictine | Lemon Juice | Grenadine | Angostura Bitters 9.5
The Singapore Sling, widely regarded as the national drink of the country, was first created in 1915 at Raffles Singapore by bartender Ngiam Tong Boon. Primarily a gin-based cocktail, the Singapore Sling also contains pineapple juice as the main ingredient, along with grenadine, lime juice and Dom Benedictine. Giving it the pretty pink hue are cherry brandy and Cointreau. Bartender Ngiam deliberately chose to give the cocktail this rosy colour.
Following the turn of the century in colonial Singapore, Raffles Singapore was the gathering place for the community and Long Bar was the watering hole. It was common to see the gentlemen nursing glasses of gin or whisky. Unfortunately for the ladies, etiquette dictated they could not consume alcohol in public, and for the sake of public modesty, fruit juices and teas were their preferred beverage.
The talented Ngiam thus saw a niche in the market and decided to create a cocktail that looked like a fruit juice, but was actually infused with gin and other liqueurs. Masking it in pink gave it a feminine flair and together with the use of clear alcohol, he cleverly led people into thinking it was a socially acceptable punch for the ladies. With that, the Singapore Sling was born. Needless to say, it became an instant hit.
Short Drinks Cocktails
Cabo Wabo Tequila | Chambord | Lemon Juice | Raspberry Puree | Sugar | Syrup | Cranberry Juice 9.5
Originates from Paris during 1910-1939. Very little is known about this great cocktail, maybe just as secret and tantalizing as the dance.
COCKTAIL GLASS COCKTAILS
Tanqueray Gin | Raspberry Puree | Sugar | Lemon Juice | Egg White 9.5
The Clover Club Cocktail is a drink that pre-dates Prohibition in the United States, and is named for the Philadelphia men’s club of the same name, which met in the Bellevue-Stratford hotel.
Cocktail glass Cocktails
Remy Martin VSOP Cognac | Cointreau | Sugar | Lemon Juice 9.5
Embury credits the invention of the drink to an American army captain in Paris during World War I and named after the motorcycle sidecar that the captain used. Both MacElhone and Vermiere state the recipe as equal parts cognac, Cointreau, and lemon juice, now known as “the French school”
Cocktail Glass Cocktails
Mount Gay Rum | Marschino | Grapefruit Juice | Lime Juice 9.5
Hemingway was affectionately known as “Papa” in Havana, and supposedly tried his first Daiquiri at La Floridita and remarked “That’s good, but I prefer mine with twice the rum and no sugar.” Effectively asking for a quadruple shot of rum and a splash of lime juice!
Mount Gay Rum | Maraschino | Pinapple Juice | Lemon Juice | Grenadine 9.5
Named for Canadian-American film actress Mary Pickford (1892–1979), it is said to have been created for her in the 1920s by either Eddie Woelkeor Fred Kaufmann at the Hotel Nacional de Cuba on a trip she took to Havana with Charlie Chaplin and Douglas Fairbanks
Botanist Gin | Lemon Juice | Honey 9.5
Like many prohibition-era cocktails, the Bee’s Knees was invented as a way to hide the scent and flavour of poor quality homemade spirits, in this case bathtub gin. The addition of honey was considered bizarre by some at the time, since sugar is more usual. The honey sweetens the drink, and may make it palatable to people who don’t normally like gin.
Remy Martin VSOP | Lemon Juice | Maple Syrup | Orange Bitters | Cider 9.5
We’ll go with the odds and attribute this elegant bosom-caresser to Murdock Pemberton, Esquire’s drinks man at the time. A drink could have a worse pedigree. Poet, playwright, newspaperman, press agent, art critic (for The New Yorker, no less) — Pemberton certainly liked to keep busy.
Wild Turkey Bourbon | Sugar | Mint 9.5
Like most recipes that come from the South, mint juleps have a long and often debated history. It’s widely believed that the name of the drink comes from the Persian word gulab and the Arab word julab, both of which translate to “rosewater.” The term julep was also used to refer to any type of syrupy mixed drink taken with medicine. As early as 1784, mint juleps were prescribed to soothe aching stomachs and help patients who had difficulty swallowing. A legend claims that the mint julep arrived in America when a man was searching near the Mississippi River for water to add to his bourbon. When he saw mint growing wild, he decided to drop a few leaves into his libation—ta da! Mint julep.
Russian Standard Platinum Vodka | Lime Juice | Ginger Beer 9.5
Back in the 1940s, vodka was an unpopular liquor on the American cocktail scene. Apparently, Americans joked that vodka was Russian for horrible. Taking a leap of faith, John G. Martin had bought the U.S. rights to the French Smirnoff brand in 1939. He unfortunately found that he couldn’t move the stuff. No one was drinking vodka.
One sombre afternoon, Martin was lamenting his inability to sell his booze at the L.A. bar Cock ‘n’ Bull with the owner, Jack Morgan. Morgan had a similar problem, but with ginger beer. There was another hard-up businessman present who had an abundance of copper mugs he couldn’t move either.
With a few drinks under their belt, a little bit of ingenuity and a bartender on hand they put their problems together and came up with the Moscow Mule — a vodka and ginger beer cocktail served in copper mugs.