Holland House – Classic Recipe & History

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Holland House

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Course: DrinksCuisine: American






Total time



Learn how to make a classic Holland House.


  • 1/2 oz 1/2 Lemon Juice

  • 1/3 oz 1/3 Maraschino Liqueur

  • 2/3 oz 2/3 Dry Vermouth

  • 2 oz 2 Genever


  • Technique: Saxe Soda Shake
  • Combine all ingredients into a cocktail shaker.
  • Add one medium or two small ice cubes to the cocktail shaker and shake until the ice fully melts.
  • Without a strainer, pour the chilled and aerated drink into a glass.
  • Garnish:
  • Lemon peel


Featured Video

What Does The Holland House Taste Like?

This is a beautiful cocktail with a taste of Martini meets Gin Sour. Invented at the Holland House in New York City by George Kappeler, this was first published in his 1900 book Modern American Drinks. While also being named after the Holland House Hotel in New York.

George Kappeler And The New York Holland House Hotel.

Like the Waldorf-Astoria, the Holland House Hotel in New York had one of the best bars in the country. Interestingly both hotels were right down the street from each other, Holland House on 30th and 5th, and the Waldorf-Astoria on 34th and 5th, the present-day location of the Empire State Building. Opened December 7th, 1891, the interior of the Holland house was considered its prized jewel. The New York Times in 1891 praised its beautiful carved marble interiors, ornate rooms, and mosaic floors and described the hotel as a marvel of bronze, marble, and glass work. Managing the hotel’s cafe and restaurant Bar was one of the top bartenders in the New York George Kappeler. He’s credited with inventing many famous cocktails, a few still popular today, and was the first to describe a classic whiskey cocktail as old-fashioned. He used the term old-fashioned to differentiate it from his other fancy and standard whiskey cocktails. George published his first cocktail book in 1895 and an updated second edition in 1906.

The good times did not last, though, and by the mid-1910s, most of the wealthy New York clients moved further north to park avenue, and the hotel started to fall on hard times. With the passing of the 18th amendment and the Volstead Act on January 17th, 1920, the hotel’s few remaining revenue streams dried up, and the hotel was sold. The Holland house closed that same year and was converted to an office building. The interior was gutted to make room for office spaces, and like the Waldorf-Astoria, a vital piece of American cocktail history was lost. Although, unlike the Waldorf-Astoria, the building is still standing on 30th and 5th next to Marble Collegiate Church. The grand interior is long gone, but it’s still fun to see the façade of the once-great Holland House.

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