Drinks Mr. Gatsby would love

Food & Drink (& recipes!)

The occasion of the Gatsby Soiree recently held at the Ebell of Los Angeles gave us an opportunity to design a bar menu fit for the era and the celebration. We had three ideas in mind:

  • one of the drinks had to feature gin, the main spirit of the Prohibition era (yes, I realize how contradictory that appears)
  • one of the drinks could be sweet, one could be on the bitter side, but both had to be refreshing for those stepping off the dance floor
  • one had to have champagne, the celebratory drink of the ages

So we set to work researching, tasting and finessing (yes, hard work indeed.) We narrowed down the top four contenders to the two we selected for the drink menu: The Prohibition and Gatsby’s Negroni.


  • 1-1/2 ounces gin (we used Bombay Sapphire, though Aviation Gin made a delicious drink as well)
  • 1-1/2 ounces Lillet Blanc
  • 1/2 ounce apricot liquor
  • 1/2 ounce fresh orange juice

Combine into a cocktail shaker, then add ice to control the dilution. Shake well (strong, for about 10 seconds) and double strain into a martini glass. Twist an orange peel over the glass to release the oils and scent, and then float for garnish.


  • 1 ounce Campari
  • 1 ounce sweet Vermouth
  • 1 ounce fresh orange juice
  • 1/2 ounce sparkling wine or champagne

Combine Campari, vermouth and orange juice into a cocktail shaker, then add ice to control dilution. Shake well (strong, for about 10 seconds) and double strain into a flute and top with sparkling wine. Garnish with a flamed orange peel in the glass.


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