Pink Lady Cocktail

Savoy Pink Lady

Pink Lady Cocktail.

The White of 1 Egg.
1 Tablespoonful Grenadine. (1 Tablespoon homemade Grenadine)
1 Glass Plymouth Gin. (2 oz Plymouth Gin)

Shake well and strain into medium size glass.

Sorry for the horrible picture, but, oh my, is that not very good. Even with homemade grenadine, I couldn’t bring myself to make this again to get a better picture.  Even the color isn’t that great.  A journalist friend, who was over for the evening, described it as more of a “Grey Lady”!

Harry McElhone gives the cocktail as the following. 1 white of a fresh egg; 2 teaspoonfuls of Grenadine; 1/6 Brandy; 1/3 Gin.

Again, not much of an improvement, with no citrus in the mix.

Similar in an edition of Mr. Boston from 1969 with another puzzling addition, “White of 1 Egg; 1 Teaspoon of Grenadine; 1 Teaspoon Sweet Cream, 1 1/2 oz Dry Gin. Shake well with cracked ice and strain into a 4 oz Cocktail Glass.”

Greg Boehm sent me recipe he turned up in “The Bartender’s Guide and Song Book”: “One Tumbler of Gin; One-fourth tumbler Grenadine; Whites of Four Eggs; Juice of two Oranges; Juice of one Lemon; Dash of Sugar. Mix with ice in the shaker: Drink before it settles.”

That actually sounds pretty good, however, the recipe is accompanied by the following charming quote, “PINK LADIES should never be taken alone. They provide too much atmosphere–too much charm for their surroundings. And we personally recommend that you mix it for four, but remember that even three’s a crowd.”

I have no idea what that means, but most of what I can imagine is not particularly savory.

The last recipe I’ll include is from Jacques Straub’s 1914 book, “Drinks”.

Straub Pink Lady

Pink Lady Cocktail.

1/2 jigger Lime Juice. (3/4 oz lime juice)
1/2 jigger gin. (3/4 oz Plymouth Gin)
1/2 jigger apple jack. (3/4 oz Laird’s Bonded Apple Brandy)
5 dashes grenadine. (2 teaspoons Grenadine)

Shake well.

I thought this on the tart side, but Mrs. Flannestad definitely approved. Not usually one to partake of Savoy amenities, she quickly agreed to finish this drink.

Interestingly, there was a 1911 musical of the name “Pink Lady”.

“Pink Lady, The (1911), a musical comedy by C. M. S. McLellan (book, lyrics), Ivan Caryll (music). [ New Amsterdam Theatre, 312 perf.] Before his marriage to Angele (Alice Dovey), Lucien Garidel (William Elliot) decides to have one last fling with his old flame from the demimonde, Claudine (Hazel Dawn). The fling is complicated by the fact that someone has been stealing kisses from attractive girls in the Forest of Compiègne. The satyr is unmasked, Lucien and Claudine enjoy their time together, then Lucien returns to Angele. Notable songs: By the Saskatchewan; Donny Didn’t, Donny Did; The Kiss Waltz; Love Is Divine; My Beautiful Lady. Although Dawn was the lead in this Klaw and Erlanger musical, she did not keep the hero in the end, because the mores of the time would not allow a member of her class to win in musical comedy. The show was based on Le Satyre, a French farce by Georges Berr and Marcel Guillemand.”

Is there any conclusion that can be drawn? When I mentioned I was researching the Pink Lady, Greg Boehm had the sage advice, “You don’t want to go there,” and said that there were at least 4 different recipes which eventually all went into the drinks canon in some form or another.  Plus, it seems like there was confusion between the various “Pink” drinks, as time went on, with people calling different drinks “Pink Lady”.

Greg did suggest that there was a basic Europe vs. America divide to the traditions of the recipes. I am unclear exactly what divides the European and American Pink Ladies, but if Straub’s recipe is any indication, the American’s are definitely a bit more sassy.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.