Zombie Cocktail – Make Don The Beachcomber Classic Tiki Cocktail

Zombie
Zombie

The History Of The Zombie Cocktail.

On the menu, it seems from day one, or at least very soon after, the Zombie is one of Donn Beach’s most famous tiki cocktails. The Zombie was so strong that it would put someone into a blackout drunk automaton state. The Zombie proved to be so renowned it was probably one of Donn’s most copied cocktails. Even though Donn tried to keep the recipe a secret, even from his bartenders, Zombies started popping up at other tiki bars all over the USA. The Aku Aku at the Sahara Casino in Las Vegas, La Mariana Sailing Club in Honolulu, The Tonga Room in San Francisco, and Even Trader Vic’s had a Zombie on the menu (but he did credit Donn for inventing it). The Zombie gained the slogan of being often imitated but never duplicated. As with all Donn Beach cocktails, there is no definitive recipe because he never published them and kept them secret from everyone, even the staff. You couldn’t do anything like that today with allergies and such. You don’t want to be known as the bar that withheld information that ended up killing somebody. Donn is also believed to have changed the Zombie recipe several times to improve it and stay ahead of the competition.

I also find it very cool that he went with this name as Night of the Living Dead didn’t debut till 1968, starting the American zombie craze. Zombies are also traditionally Haitian folklore and not Polynesian. This shows that Tiki was a mish-mash of exotic island Hollywood imagery and not something born of actually Polynesian tradition.

From just looking at the Don the Beachcomber menus, nothing is exciting. It just has the zombie listed as a cocktail with a little voodoo man next to it on some versions. If you wish to google it yourself and check it out, the primary menu years you can find online are 1934, 1941, and 1954, and there is a separate 1960s drink menu.

What Does The Zombie Cocktail Taste Like?

This drink will knock you on your ass. It goes down like a tropical Long Island Ice Tea, and I won’t lie, I had just one of these (the one in the picture), and I had a hard time walking straight. In 1934 Don the Beachcomber sold these for $2.00 and had a limit of 2, and even that seems a bit generous. This cocktail is perfect and very successful at having just enough juice and sweetener not to make the volume of booze overwhelming. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still very alcohol forward, and you feel it, but it toes the line that even a non-old fashion drinker would like it—something the Long Island does not do.

Zombie Cocktail Variations.

There are as many zombie variations as there are bartenders, and that’s fine, considering there is no definitive known recipe. The recipe I have provided here is the Jeff “Beachbum” Berry recipe, as it is regarded as the most accurate and probably the closest to one of Donn Beach’s Zombies. Again, Donn was thought to have changed the recipe several times, so this may be an amalgamation of several versions.

The Most Important Ingredient

The essential ingredient in the Zombie is the 151. Surprising right? It’s only a half-ounce float on top, but the 151 you use will make or break this cocktail. I personally like Lemon Hart’s 151. It’s the original and surprisingly flavorful for being such a high proof. Donn Beach was said to hunt for this particular brand because it was just that good, and I agree with that. Other lighter 151s add booze (Granted, this cocktail doesn’t need more), but the Lemon Hart ads booze and flavor. If you do not find this particular brand, I would try using a navy strength (57% ABV) rum that is a bit darker in color instead. For an excellent article on 151 and its history, check out this link to The Lone Canner. The Lone Canner also has a great article on the proof system, its history, and technical details here

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Zombie Cocktail

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

414

kcal
ABV

27%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make a Zombie.

Ingredients

  • 1 oz Lime Juice

  • 2/3 oz Pineapple Juice

  • 2/3 oz Papaya Juice

  • 1/2 oz Simple Syrup

  • 1/2 oz Apple Brandy

  • 1 oz Black Rum

  • 2 oz Gold Rum

  • 1 oz White Rum

  • 1/2 oz 151

Directions

  • Combine all ingredients into a shaker except the 151.
  • Add a scoop of shaved ice. If you do not have shaved ice then crushed ice will do.
  • Vigorously shake till the shaker is ice cold and frosted.
  • Pour the whole shaker into the serving glass. Ice and all.
  • Top Cocktail off with a float of 151.
  • Garnish with maraschino cherries, pineapple, and mint.

Recipe Video

Notes


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If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

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Jack Rose – Make This Beautiful Classic Early 1900s Cocktail

Jack Rose
Jack Rose

This drink dates back to the early 1900s, and it is one of those drinks that everyone and their mother claimed they invented. The name for it most likely came from the fact that it was pink and made with apple brandy, the most common brand of apple brandy in the United States being Laird’s AppleJack.

Others, however say it was named after a gangster from that period. Think of this as a slightly sweeter and pink version of a Sidecar.

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Jack Rose

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

181

kcal
ABV

25%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make the a Jack Rose.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice

  • 1/2 oz Grenadine

  • 2 oz Apple Brandy

Directions

  • Combine all ingredients in the shaker. Add ice to the shaker.
  • Vigorously shake till the shaker is ice cold and frosted.
  • Strain into glass to remove ice shards.

Notes


Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.


Corpse Reviver #1 – Make This Wonderful 1934 Savoy Recipe

Corpse Reviver No.1 Cocktail
Corpse Reviver No.1 Cocktail

The History Of The Corpse Reviver #.1.

While the corpse reviver dates back to the mid-1800s, there was no authentic solid recipe until the 1930s. It is casually mentioned in publications during the 1800s, but Harry Craddock from the American Bar at the Savoy is the first to write down a solid recipe. Even though the Savoy Cocktail Book was published in 1934, it is a collection of the bars recipes dating from the 1890s to the 1930s so the recipe could be from the 1800s. Also, there is no similarity to this, and the corpse reviver no.2 other than the name. The Corpse Reviver is said to revive a dead body because of its strength, but it’s a perfect and balanced cocktail.

A Short History Of The American Bar at the Savoy Hotel In London.

In 1893, The American Bar at the Savoy hotel started serving American-style cocktails in London to the British upper class. The American Bar has always been a high-end bar but what set it on the map was when Harry Craddock became its head bartender in the 1920s. Harry Craddock was a British-born bartender who immigrated to the United States, eventually becoming a US citizen and head bartender of several high-end hotel bars. Still, Harry found himself out of work with the start of prohibition in 1920. He then immigrated back to England and became head bartender of the Savoy Hotel’s Bar. Harry transformed The American Bar from a high-end bar to one of the seminal cocktail bars of the 20th century. As the American prohibition was ending, the hotel realized it should record all of its most famous recipes and the innovations Harry brought to the bar. A year later, they published the Savoy Cocktail Book. Printed in 1934, the Savoy Cocktail Book documents the bar’s best recipes from the 1890s to the 1930s and stands as the pillar of prohibition-era European cocktail innovation. If Jerry Thomas’s Bartenders Guide is the best cocktail book the 1800s gave us, then The Savoy Cocktail Book is the best cocktail book of the first half of the 1900s. I don’t think I will ever be able to drink there, though. A cocktail cost around $250 there, and they have one that’s almost $1000, and I’m not the Amazon guy, so good thing we have their recipe book.

What Does The Corpse Reviver #1 Taste Like?

This is an incredible cocktail. It tastes like a fruit-flavored Manhattan instead of a typical Manhattan’s standard wood and spice flavors. The pairing of equal parts apple brandy with sweet vermouth is spot on. It replaces the spicy woody flavors of the Angostura bitters with cherry and orange liqueurs that mix well with its apple brandy base. If you like manhattans, then this is a definite must. You may end up liking it more.

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Corpse Reviver #1

3 from 1 vote Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

163

kcal
ABV

28%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make the oldest known Corpse Reviver No.1 recipe from the 1934 Savoy Cocktail Book.

Ingredients

  • 1 dash Maraschino Liqueur

  • 2 dashes Orange Bitters

  • 1.5 oz Sweet Vermouth

  • 1.5 oz Apple Brandy

Directions

  • Add Ice To Mixing Glass and combine all ingredients in the mixing glass.
  • Stir the ingredients for 20 – 30 seconds to properly chill and dilute the drink.
  • Strain into glass.

Notes


Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.


Pink Lady – Make This Beautiful Early 1900s Cocktail

Pink Lady Cocktail
Pink Lady Cocktail

Invented somewhere around the early 1900s, this cocktail was named after a broadway show called The Pink Lady. Oddly enough, this old-time pink cocktail shares a similar history to a more modern pink cocktail, the Cosmopolitan. Both are incredible drinks that became wildly popular during their days but soon fell from favor as they became associated with being girly drinks. However, the Cosmo and Pink Lady are nothing to mess with. Both of these drinks taste amazing and will lay you out if made right. So if drinking a Pink Lady is girly, count me one of the girls.

How To Get Egg White Right In Cocktails.

Cocktails with egg whites are difficult cocktails to get right, and anyone who says otherwise is projecting a false image. Everyone who has made a fizz has had one of these pops open on them while shaking, only to make a mess. The best advice I can pass on to making any fizz cocktail is it comes down to 2 things; Technique and chemistry. A common technique that works very well is using a dry shake. A dry shake is shaking all your ingredients together without ice first to make forming the foam easier. The foam will still form with ice, but you will work twice as hard for half the result if you shake with ice first. The first shake is only about 20-30 seconds of vigorous shaking, but this is the part that forms most of your foam. A little tip here is to wrap a kitchen towel around the seal of your shaker because no matter how strong you are or how tight your grip, it will pop open a little. As the egg whites unfold, they can expand up to 8x their original size, thus increasing the pressure inside the shaker and forcing small amounts of the sugary egg mix to squirt out. Wrapping a small towel around the shaker will catch this and keep things clean.

Next and more important is chemistry. You have to get the science right for egg whites to foam properly. Denaturing/unfolding egg protein into a meringue is more science than brawn, and a friend of mine who is a baker once gave me this advice for how she made meringue at the bakery.

  1. Keep it room temperature.
  2. Use an acid to help break the proteins hydrogen bonds and unfold it in addition to beating it.
  3. Use sugar to stabilize the foam from collapsing and to form smaller bubbles.

A mistake I made for a long time was using eggs fresh from the fridge. Even if I’m doing a dry shake, I’m still starting with cold ingredients. So take the eggs out and let them come to room temperature first. Cold egg protein is much more stable and difficult to break apart than if it is at room temperature. The next tip is to use acid. Bakers will use cream of tartar as the acid helps accelerate the denaturing process along with beating it. In the cocktail, we use lemon or lime juice. It is much, much harder to form a foam without using an acid. The last bit of advice is to use sugar to stabilize the foamed protein from collapsing. A sweet liqueur alone isn’t enough. I’ve tried making fizzes with just liqueurs for sweeter alone, and they have never formed a good foam. This needs real simple syrup. If you don’t use sugar in your Fizz, what will happen is the foam will develop, but it will collapse back into the liquid just as fast, and you will be left with a thin layer of lame bubbles on top. It will still taste the same and be good, but that beautiful foam will be gone, and for these drinks, the large foam head is the garnish. The sugar makes the water “wetter” and helps keep the suspended air inside from combining into larger bubbles. This helps form a smoother micro bubble foam.

Cocktails with egg whites are some of the most elegant and sublime cocktails, but they are not the easiest to make. Eventually, you can get to a point where you can make them correctly and consistently, but it can take a while and many failed attempts. Hopefully, the tips I gave help shorten that journey. There are a lot of tips and tricks out there for making fizzes, and I tried to keep mine reasonable and realistic, but see what works for you. I’ve been doing this for a long time, and still, I have the occasional one that doesn’t foam up well, even though I make them all the same. It’s just the nature of the egg sometimes, and I accept it and make it again.

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Discover what classic cocktails you can make right now with the ingredients you have. Check out the Vintage American Cocktail app.

Pink Lady

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

213

kcal
ABV

20%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make a classic Pink Lady.

Ingredients

  • 1 Whole Egg Whites

  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice

  • 1/2 oz Grenadine

  • 1/2 oz Apple Brandy

  • 1.5 oz Dry Gin

Directions

  • Combine all ingredients in the shaker without ice. Shake dry for 30 second – egg foams better when not cold.
  • Now add ice to the shaker. Vigorously shake again till the shaker is ice cold and frosted.
  • Strain into glass to remove ice shards.

Notes


Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.


Calvados Cocktail | Make This Wonderful 1930s Orange Cocktail

Calvados Cocktail
Calvados Cocktail

A Short History Of The American Bar at the Savoy Hotel In London.

In 1893, The American Bar at the Savoy hotel started serving American-style cocktails in London to the British upper class. The American Bar has always been a high-end bar but what set it on the map was when Harry Craddock became its head bartender in the 1920s. Harry Craddock was a British-born bartender who immigrated to the United States, eventually becoming a US citizen and head bartender of several high-end hotel bars. Still, Harry found himself out of work with the start of prohibition in 1920. He then immigrated back to England and became head bartender of the Savoy Hotel’s Bar. Harry transformed The American Bar from a high-end bar to one of the seminal cocktail bars of the 20th century. As the American prohibition was ending, the hotel realized it should record all of its most famous recipes and the innovations Harry brought to the bar. A year later, they published the Savoy Cocktail Book. Printed in 1934, the Savoy Cocktail Book documents the bar’s best recipes from the 1890s to the 1930s and stands as the pillar of prohibition-era European cocktail innovation. If Jerry Thomas’s Bartenders Guide is the best cocktail book the 1800s gave us, then The Savoy Cocktail Book is the best cocktail book of the first half of the 1900s. I don’t think I will ever be able to drink there, though. A cocktail cost around $250 there, and they have one that’s almost $1000, and I’m not the Amazon guy, so good thing we have their recipe book.

This Specific Recipe And What It Taste Like.

So this is a modified recipe from the original one in the Savoy Cocktail guide. The original recipe is 4 oz brandy, 4 oz orange juice, 2 oz orange liqueur, and 2 oz orange bitters, which sounds awful. This makes me think it must be either a typo or they were using very different ingredients. But I don’t think they used other ingredients for just this one cocktail. I think what they meant to write was two dashes instead of 2 oz of orange bitters. So I modified it to the size of a single cocktail by cutting each ingredient in half and imaging they meant two dashes, not 2 oz. At those proportions, this is a fantastic cocktail. It tastes like a perfect screwdriver with the presentation of a mimosa.

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Calvados Cocktail

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: British
Servings

1

servings
Calories

297

kcal
ABV

24%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make an amazing calvados cocktail.

Ingredients

  • 1 dashes Orange Bitters

  • 2 oz Orange Juice

  • 1 oz Orange Liqueur

  • 2 oz Apple Brandy

Directions

  • Add Ice To Mixing Glass. Combine all ingredients in the mixing glass.
  • Stir the ingredients for 20 – 30 seconds to properly chill and dilute the drink.
  • Strain into glass.

Notes


Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.


Apple Jack – Make This Classic 1917 Hugo Ensslin Cocktail

Apple Jack
Apple Jack

The Apple Jack was created in New York by Hugo Ensslin. He was the author of the last major cocktail book, Recipes For Mixed Drinks, written before prohibition hit. His book offers an excellent glimpse into bartending at its most mature form in the United States before prohibition.

The Hotel Wallick History

Built in the 1880s as the “Hotel Cadillac” it was eventually sold to the Wallick brothers in 1905. Located on 43rd and Broadway (Times Square), the Hotel Cadillac branded itself as an exciting place for food, drinks, and entertainment. In 1913 the Wallick Brothers changed the name to “Hotel Wallick”, and relaunched the hotel where It became famous for its burlesque and cabaret shows. Unlike other New York hotels with famous bartenders that tended to appeal to older wealthy guest, the Hotel Wallick was a young businessman’s party hotel. It was during this period that many of Hugo’s famous cocktails such as the aviation, honeymoon, and paradise cocktail were invented. In 1919 (beginnings of prohibition) the hotel sold knowing its drunken party business was over and was renamed “The Cadillac” by its new owners. In 1933 prohibition was repealed but the country was already dealing with the Great Depression. While the hotel had managed to survive prohibition it was unable to weather the depression and closed its doors in 1939. The building was demolished in 1940.

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Download The Official Vintage American Cocktails App

Discover what classic cocktails you can make right now with the ingredients you have. Check out the Vintage American Cocktail app.

Apple Jack

3 from 1 vote Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

180

kcal
ABV

34%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make a classic Apple Jack cocktail by Hugo Ensslin from his 1917 book Recipes for Mixed Drinks

Ingredients

  • 1 dash Peychauds Bitters

  • 2 dashes Orange Bitters

  • 1 tsp Gum Syrup

  • 2 oz Apple Brandy

Directions

  • Add Ice To Mixing Glass and combine all ingredients in the mixing glass.
  • Stir the ingredients for 20 – 30 seconds to properly chill and dilute the drink.
  • Strain into glass.

Notes


Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.


Honeymoon – Make This Beautiful 1917 Hugo Ensslin’s Beautiful Recipe

Honeymoon Cocktail
Honeymoon Cocktail

Invented by Hugo Ensslin and first written in his 1916 book Recipes for Mixed Drinks, this is a beautiful little drink. With a name like a honeymoon, you would think it would have honey in it, but it doesn’t. Not much to say about it other than it’s a pre-prohibition cocktail that uses apple brandy and benedictine together in a lovely way.

The Hotel Wallick History

Built in the 1880s as the “Hotel Cadillac” it was eventually sold to the Wallick brothers in 1905. Located on 43rd and Broadway (Times Square), the Hotel Cadillac branded itself as an exciting place for food, drinks, and entertainment. In 1913 the Wallick Brothers changed the name to “Hotel Wallick”, and relaunched the hotel where It became famous for its burlesque and cabaret shows. Unlike other New York hotels with famous bartenders that tended to appeal to older wealthy guest, the Hotel Wallick was a young businessman’s party hotel. It was during this period that many of Hugo’s famous cocktails such as the aviation, honeymoon, and paradise cocktail were invented. In 1919 (beginnings of prohibition) the hotel sold knowing its drunken party business was over and was renamed “The Cadillac” by its new owners. In 1933 prohibition was repealed but the country was already dealing with the Great Depression. While the hotel had managed to survive prohibition it was unable to weather the depression and closed its doors in 1939. The building was demolished in 1940.

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Download The Official Vintage American Cocktails App

Discover what classic cocktails you can make right now with the ingredients you have. Check out the Vintage American Cocktail app.

Honeymoon

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

227

kcal
ABV

34%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make the amazing Honeymoon Cocktail from Hugo Ensslin 1917 cocktail boob Recipes for Mixed Drinks.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice

  • 1/2 oz Orange Liqueur

  • 1/2 oz Benedictine

  • 2 oz Apple Brandy

Directions

  • Add Ice To Mixing Glass and combine all ingredients in the mixing glass.
  • Stir the ingredients for 20 – 30 seconds to properly chill and dilute the drink.
  • Strain into glass.

Notes


Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.