This article appeared in the March issue of Australian Bartender
Salvatore ‘The Maestro’ Calabrese recently hosted an exclusive night at the Playboy Club (London) using vintage and rare spirits to recreate classic cocktails while reading recipes from a first edition copy of Jerry Thomas’ 1862 cocktail book The Bartender’s Guide: How to mix Drinks or The Bon Vivant’s Companion.
“I have always been fascinated with history and began collecting vintage spirits many years ago,” Calabrese told Bartender, “and came up with the idea to create a Unique Vintage Cocktail list that would offer the lucky few an opportunity to actually taste a little bit of cocktail history.”
Calabrese hosted an intimate crowd for the presentation, including industry icons Peter Dorelli and Erik Lorincz. “It was an unbelievable experience for all of us present, the excitement and anticipation made for an electric atmosphere and the bartenders felt as if the creators of those great drinks were looking over their shoulders as they worked!,” Calabrese stated.
The Maestro was pleasantly shocked when one of the guests (Dorelli) added a unique touch to one of the drinks. “When it came to mixing the White Lady cocktail Peter Dorelli brought out the shaker that belonged to Harry Craddock himself. That was the icing on the cake!”
The Maestro himself tipped his hat to both the past and future by extracting a small amount of the Old Fashioned cocktail for storage in a miniature cocktail shaker. “To be hidden,” he subtly informed us. “Just like Harry Craddock did many years ago, for somebody else to find and drink our health.”
Just don’t go tearing up the Playboy Club in search of it!
Click HERE to check out a video of the event.