Drinks of the Decade


In honor of everybody’s favorite pub day — St. Patrick’s Day — a captivating idea from Time Out Chicago provides historical data on the drinks of the decades, profiling one drink per local Chicago watering hole. Hence, you learn a bit of historical lore, a recipe for fine spirits and the location of the spot that will make one up for you. ‘My kind of town’ so sings Sinatra!


The ’20s

Despite Prohibition, liquor flowed freely at the Green Mill. Because it was a speakeasy, stemware was eschewed in favor of coffee cups to maintain the illusion that patrons were drinking mainly for medicinal purposes. A gin martini ($9), made then and now with two parts gin to one part dry vermouth, was handed to customers without pomp or circumstance, a far cry from the fancy martini glasses Green Mill uses today.


The ’30s

The roots of the Bellini ($12) go back to 1934, when bartender Guiseppe Cipriani at the famous Harry’s Bar in Venice (a frequent hangout of Ernest Hemingway and Orson Welles), created a cocktail from sparkling wine and peach puree. The pink color reminded Cipriani of a detail in a painting by Giovanni Bellini, so he named the drink after him. Over the years, the Bellini has become a staple cocktail worldwide. Coq d’Or’s Bellini uses Champagne and peach schnapps, with a splash of orange juice for color. Served in a sparkling wine flute, it is an elegant cocktail for an elegant room.


Restaurants & Bars




~ by eaesthete on 03/16/09.

3 Responses to “Drinks of the Decade”

  1. Pretty interesting using coffee cups instead of glasses during Prohibition even though they were all crowded together in a speakeasy.

  2. ..and since we’re raising a glass to the Irish today, lets make mention of the “Nine Fine Irishmen” tavern located at the New York, New York hotel and casino in Las Vegas. Story has it that the 9000 square foot tavern was built in Ireland, and then taken down and shipped to it’s current home in Las Vegas. Piece by piece. If you’re an Irishmen (or pretending to be one) drinking on this most sacred of days, there’s no better place to be. “Bartender, I’ll have a Harps beer over here!”

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