Named for the comedic actor of the early film era, this pre-Prohibition cocktail, largely forgotten in modern times, is rich and indulgent enough to evoke old Hollywood glamour.
It was invented at New York City’s Waldorf Astoria hotel prior to the 1920s and was included in Albert Stevens Crockett’s 1934 “The Old Waldorf Astoria Bar Book,” where the recipe called for equal parts sloe gin, lemon juice and apricot brandy. The modern edition of the book, recently updated by Frank Caiafa, has slightly reimagined the drink as below.
Do note that dilution is essential for this cocktail, which can veer toward syrupy. Shake it a little longer than you ordinarily might, or add a half ounce of water to the shaker with the other ingredients.
1 ounce sloe gin (such as Plymouth)
1 ounce apricot liqueur (such as Rothman & Winter)
1 ounce lime juice, freshly squeezed
Add the sloe gin, apricot liqueur and lime juice into a shaker with ice and shake until well-chilled.
Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.