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Government Almost Killed the Cocktail: New at Reason

The following excerpt is from an article that originally appeared on Hit and Run Reason

In his latest feature for Reason, Peter Suderman explains how the government almost killed the cocktail:

In the years before 1920, the drink, which had evolved from an earlier iceless form beginning in the mid-1800s, would have looked more or less like the one described above, with aromatic bitters and perhaps a single cherry. When prepared by a serious bartender at a serious bar, the drinks were consistent and precise, with proportions carefully tweaked and measured. Often, they were accompanied by a tiny silver spoon.

But during the next 14 years, the cocktail underwent a radical transformation.

The spoon disappeared. A splash of carbonated water was added to the top, or the bottom, or both. The fruit garnish took over the drink, with handfuls of candied cherries stuffed into the glass and giant slices of orange pounded into the sugar, creating a juicy, sweet, busy concoction more like

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