Photo Source: Library of Congress. While Prohibition was meant to eradicate the temptation of liquor, it had the unintended effect of turning many law-abiding citizens into criminals.
Gatsby: The Great American Story
By barring liquor from the masses, the government unwittingly made it more desirable, more fashionable, and something eager consumers had to get their hands on. Prohibition gave birth to bathtub gin, cocktails, finger food and the elusive speakeasy. If you were able to provide your guests with an endless stream of libations, your popularity was assured.
As the demand for illegal liquor increased, so did the methods for masking its production and consumption. Cocktails gained popularity—heavily flavored concoctions assembled to disguise the taste of potent bathtub gin with juices, herbs, sweeteners and syrups.
Bootleggers, forced to produce liquor in secret, used questionable methods to ferment gin and other types of alcohol in their homes.
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Often poisonous ingredients, such as methanol wood alcohol , were used. A government report from stated that nearly all of the , gallons of liquor confiscated in New York that year contained some type of poison. Jamaica ginger extract, also known as Jake, was sold in pharmacies as a headache remedy.
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Over time, more toxic ingredients were added that could result in paralysis, a condition often referred to as Jake Leg. Despite the reality of the situation, overall it seemed like Americans were having a lot of fun during Prohibition.
The character of millionaire Jay Gatsby represents the extremes of s wealth and decadence. Gatsby devotes his life to accumulating riches in order to attract the attention of his romantic obsession, the lovely but spoiled Daisy Buchanan. In the main hall a bar with a real brass rail was set up, and stocked with gins and liquors and with cordials so long forgotten that most of his female guests were too young to know one from the other.
It is heavily inferred that Gatsby earned his fortune, at least in part, through bootlegging. How else could he afford his lavish parties with bottomless cocktails to spare? This fictional subplot is based in fact.
Why we feel for Gatsby even though he is awful
For a small fee, doctors would prescribe their patients whiskey for just about any ailment, and sometimes no ailment at all. Crooked pharmacists would even sell forged prescriptions to their customers. The novel, at least in part, provides a reflection of the social issues and attitudes of the time period.
In honor of Gatsby, Fitzgerald and Prohibition, I decided to whip up a cocktail reminiscent of the time period. This concoction was born during the years of Prohibition, when most liquor was low-quality bathtub gin that needed plenty of masking with other flavors. Either way, the name represents this cocktail well, since it relies on the sweet flavor of honey to overpower the gin.
Gatsby: The Great American Story
As you sip this flapper cocktail, raise a glass to F. Tori Avey of The History Kitchen shares the origin of the drink and the history of Prohibition in a full post on her blog.
Altman, Linda Jacobs Blumenthal, Karen Bolton, Ross Boothby, William T Recorder Print. Tori Avey is a food writer, recipe developer, and the creator of ToriAvey.
Constitution and the entire era it encompassed. American Masters profiles respected author F. Scott Fitzgerald including a career timeline and an excerpt from one of his essays.
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Scott Fitzgerald circa Confiscated barrel and bottles of whiskey circa Heat over medium, whisking often, till the mixture reaches a slow simmer and the honey is liquid and smooth. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. To Make Cocktail: Combine 2 tbsp of the honey simple syrup, gin, lemon juice and orange juice in a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a small chilled cocktail glass and serve.
Reserve remaining honey simple syrup for more cocktails. If left to stand longer than a few hours, the syrup will need to be re-simmered and recombined, then cooled again. Galvin was not alone in her glamor. I wish there had been more opulence — those Long Island mansions are phenomenal works of over-the-brim lavishness.
This, after all, is a story about class distinction and our desire to climb the equality ladder and close the door behind us on our less equal fellows. Of behaving with abandon and letting our friend take the fall. If his acting ever disappoints me, he will fall from the pedestal upon which I have unfairly put him.
Nick is the heart of the plot and its voice of reason. There was nary a moment when Hemphill did not convince me he was thoroughly unmodern Nick. Nearly as believable was Gatsby himself was a golden-voiced and -haired Michael Bayler.