Going Out? Don’t Forget Your Speakeasy Membership Card

Stork Club Speakeasy card

Actual Stork Club card from the Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library

In the 1930s and 40s, the Stork Club — owned by the dapper Sherman Billingsley — was the hottest nightclub and restaurant in New York City. So when I clicked on Slate.com to find photographs of real membership cards to the city’s speakeasies, I nearly fell out of my chair. It’s pretty remarkable that some forward-thinking tippler managed to keep track of his cards and preserve them for posterity. But here they are, part of the rare manuscripts collection at Cornell University. Phew. Read More

The Bronx Cocktail, Updated (Or Rather, Backdated)

 

Bronx Cocktail

Orange juice, or no juice? That’s the question with a Bronx cocktail.

Orange juice in cocktails has never struck me a particularly appealing. I do adore the Stork Club cocktail, mostly for its vintage New York society flair (the Stork Club was a 1930s and 40s celebrity hotspot). But that’s about where I draw the line. So I was intrigued to stumble across a recipe for the classic New York borough drink, the Bronx Cocktail, that is juice-free, and another that is practically juice-free.

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Where to Drink Next: The Dead Rabbit

Dead Rabbit's upstairs parlor. Photo Credit: Andrew Kist / Hanna Lee Communications, Inc.

The name might not sound auspicious, but the Dead Rabbit is the most exciting new bar in New York City, bar none. The mid-19th century-styled drinking saloon takes its unusual moniker from an Irish street gang that roamed Lower Manhattan in the 1850s (if you must know, they were a part of the Roach Guards, also known as the Black Birds. But I digress.).

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The Bowery Fix

Saxon + Parole's brilliant Bowery Fix

Saxon + Parole’s brilliant Bowery Fix

Everyone has their cocktail quirks. For moi, I’ll likely order the drink on the menu with the most obscure, impossible-sounding ingredients. Molé bitters?  Beet-infused gin? Celery juice? Count me in and make it a double. That may be why I gravitated to the Bowery Fix. It had me at bell pepper. Truly, most bartenders would never think to mix tequila, chartreuse, yellow bell pepper, mezcal, and chili oil together, but then again, mixologist extraordinare Naren Young at Saxon + Parole is no ordinary bartender. Props for one of my most memorable modern cocktails in recent memory. I’ll soon be going back for another.

Bowery Fix
Espolon blanco tequila, mezcal, yellow chartreuse, fresh bell pepper, chili oil