Welcome to Imbibe Magazine's between-issues look at liquid culture with drink recipes, news and more. From coffee to cocktails, Imbibe celebrates your world in a glass.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Toasting Gatsby in Six Prohibition-Era Cocktails

Baz Luhrmann’s much-anticipated adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby premieres today in theaters across the country. The story is set in the gin-soaked twenties, in the midst of Prohibition, and F. Scott Fitzgerald was known to be quite the tippler himself. Want to drink like Gatsby? Look toward these six classic cocktails. 

Photo by Stuart Mullenberg

Elegant, infinitely balanced and approachable, the Sidecar has rightly become one of the most popular classic cocktails of the past century. 

Easy to assemble but hard to forget, this Prohibition-era classic has found its way into a new generation of cocktail glasses thanks in part to Seattle-based bartender Murray Stenson, who helped re-popularize the drink.

Gin, lime and crème de menthe combine in this bracing, once-forgotten classic. And we think Gatsby narrator Nick Carraway would find the name rather fitting. 

This classic fizz was traditionally served without ice, but adding several large cubes or a long spear of ice makes for a fine slow-sipper. For extra, Gatsby-esque decadence, substitute chilled dry Champagne for the club soda to make a minty French 75.

Though its origins are murky, there’s no question that this drink was wildly popular in the 1920s, and because it is gin-based, F. Scott Fitzgerald would surely have sipped his fair share of them.

Cocktail historian David Wondrich describes the Bloody Mary, originally created in the 1920s by Pete Petiot at Harry’s Bar in Paris, as “second only to the Martini in the world of WASP drinking”. We’re pretty sure that Daisy, Nick and their hard-partying cohorts would have started many a day with a tall Bloody Mary.