Hump Day Happy Hour: The Fitzgerald

standard December 11, 2014 Leave a response

fitzgerald-cocktail-150Today we introduced our 3-year-old to “Elf On A Shelf.” He was scared to death. Mostly because I set the stage by saying “someone is coming to see you and he is going to be watching you every day.” For the next hour he couldn’t take his eyes off the front door.

Eventually he came around and started to embrace his new guardian. We even managed to get a name for Santa’s little eye in the sky…Comet. Overall, pretty awesome name for an elf that flies back to the North Pole every night.

After Comet and the kids exchanged pleasantries, I decided to get into some holiday spirit(s) and it got me thinking about tradition. With this new elf tradition, another tradition has been born – “Hump Day Happy Hour”. Every Wednesday from here on out, it’s happy hour in my house between the hours of 9 and 10pm.

We’ll be mixing up and drinking a new classic cocktail each week and sharing with you, our loyal Nov-i, the fruits of our labor.

For our introductory libation I wanted to try a spin on a Gin Sour, The Fitzgerald. There’s no real reason why except I love a sour anything and I wanted to try one with gin instead of whiskey.

From what I gather, this drink was created by Dale Degroff, the “Cocktail King”. Degroff honed his mixology mastery behind the bar of many fine drinking establishments including New York’s Rainbow Room, famous for being where BIll Pullman took Meg Ryan on their date in Sleepless in Seattle.

Originally named the “Gin Thing” by Degroff, it was changed to the Fitzgerald after a guest at the Rainbow Room requested it have a classier moniker. The guest, a fan of F. Scott Fitzgerald, thought the actor could use some love so she made the recommendation and Degroff went with it.

So, now that you know where it comes from, let’s get into how it’s made. Without further adieu:

fitzgerald cocktail

The Fitzgerald

  • 1.5 oz dry gin – we used Brokers, mostly because the cap is a derby (and it’s delicious).
  • ¾ oz fresh lemon juice STRAINED (if you don’t strain it, then your Fitzgerald will be pulpy)
  • ¾ oz simple syrup
  • 2 dashes Angostura Bitters

Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker and fill about ¾ full with ice. Shake until well chilled, about 10ish seconds. Strain into a martini glass if you are classy or into a rocks glass over ice if you are me. Garnish with a lemon peel (or don’t).

Now here’s the deal. This thing is delicious. The wild card is the bitters. As discussed in our bitters manifesto, it’s all about balance and it really shows in the Fitzgerald. It’s sweet, but the bitters dulls the tartness every so slightly making this just an awesomely tasty (and surprisingly complex) cocktail.

There you have it, our first Hump Day Happy Hour in the books (no pun intended). We’ll see you next week, but until then….keep knocking back the whiskey sours!


Prolific Party Drinker. Last One To Leave. Sausage Maker. Pizza Eater. Cocktail Novice.