Weekly Cocktail #48: The Florodora

The Florodora cocktail.

The Florodora cocktail.

What’s in a name? Well in the world of cocktails, quite a bit. We think it is safe to say that some famous drinks remain popular as much from their name as their flavor, and some excellent cocktails lost favor over time when their names no longer seemed macho quite right. Enter the Florodora (sometimes spelled Floradora), a delicious long drink that was one of the most popular cocktails of its day, only to fade into obscurity. And we are pretty sure the name had something to with it. Can you really imagine James Bond striding to the casino bar in his tux and ordering a “Florodora, shaken, not stirred”? We didn’t think so. (Not sure you would see Don Draper sippin’ a Florodora either.)

flora3flora4Although we have no doubt that Ian Fleming, Bond’s creator, would have enjoyed the Florodora. The Florodora combines gin, lime juice, raspberry liqueur or syrup and is topped by ginger ale (or ginger beer). These are all solid cocktail ingredients, and they play very well together. The Florodora starts with the aroma of gin and lime, on the sip you get the lime plus the sweet berry and sugar from the ginger ale, but the gin and ginger spice keep the finish clean. Like most classic long drinks, these are very easy to drink. Maybe too easy.

flora5flora6Ironically, in its day, the Florodora name was “cool”. The name comes from a famous musical “Florodora” of the late 1800’s and early 1900’s that featured six attractive young women of similar stature (that wasn’t a hard sell back then either). The girls from the show were very popular in New York and legend has it that all six actresses from the original cast married millionaires. Sure, why not? But after a few years the show fell out of fashion and the name faded with it. What was once cool, soon sounded “dated” (at best). Again, we are pretty sure Frank Sinatra never ordered a Florodora. (He was a Jack drinker anyway..)

flora7But we think the Florodora deserves a real comeback. This is a drink that is easy to make and will please a crowd. The only issue with the ingredients is choosing to use raspberry syrup or liqueur like Chambord. We make our own raspberry syrup, and it is a useful ingredient, but prefer the concentrated berry flavor and vanilla notes of the Chambord. You can also play with the gin to get more, or less, herbal flavor. We like to use a classic like Plymouth, but suggest you experiment. And maybe you can tweak the recipe enough to create your own version of the cocktail and give it a new name. Just make sure it’s a good one….

flora2The Florodora:

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz. dry gin
  • 1/2 oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 raspberry liqueur (Chambord) or raspberry syrup
  • 3-4 oz. ginger ale or ginger beer
  • Lime wedge for garnish

Assemble:

  1. Combine the gin, lime juice and raspberry liqueur in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake until chilled and strain into a highball or Collins glass filled with ice.
  2. Top with the ginger ale, give a quick stir with a cocktail spoon and then garnish with the lime wedge. Serve.
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21 thoughts on “Weekly Cocktail #48: The Florodora

  1. I am totally making a Floradora (would drink it just for its name alone, yes) today as I have all the ingredients on hand 🙂 Thanks for the awesome Friday cocktail! Also always enjoy your stories. You write very well.

    • Thanks. And we bet you will love the drink. Carolyn gave it an “ooh that’s really good”- and now asks for them. That is as well as a cocktail does around here.

  2. Nice. I tried this a little while ago with Chambord and ginger ale and thought ti was great. I do want to make a tequila variant though once I get some tequila again. It’s called the Floradora the Explorer 😉

  3. This is a great looking cocktail! I think I’ll try it with mashed raspberries, finely diced fresh ginger, and coconut water. What do you think?
    Also, most Gin these days is grain-based, and only juniper flavored. I have a bottle of grape-based Gin (love it! did a post on it a while back), but I’m wondering if you guys know of some other good brands that are not grain-based?

    • Your version with the mashed berries, ginger and coconut water should be good. Gin and coconut water are a very good match.

      We don’t know of any grain-free gin. Didn’t even know about grape-based gin. But now hove to check it out.

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