The Shirley Temple is a classic mix of ginger ale, grenadine, lemon or lime juice and maraschino cherries. It’s named for the child actress, singer and dancer who starred in many movies and television shows during the 1930s and 1940s and later worked as a U.S. diplomat and ambassador.
Believed to be the world’s first mocktail, the Shirley Temple is still a popular order today, but at most bars it’s an afterthought, served with soda-gun ginger ale and garnished with bright-red, preservative-laden cherries. Fortunately, some barkeeps choose to give the drink the same thoughtful treatment they give cocktails.
Colleen Kenny, the bar manager of Nostrana in Portland, Oregon, serves customers her version of the Shirley Temple when they want something that’s nonalcoholic but still interesting. The Don’t Call Me Shirley features housemade grenadine, fresh lemon and lime juice, club soda and amarena cherries. It skips the ginger ale, resulting in a drink that’s less sweet than the original, but still has plenty of effervescence and flavor.
“It’s a fun way to let them drink something that’s special when they’re eating out,” she says. “I drank them all the time when eating out with my parents. It’s always consistent. We call ours Don’t Call Me Shirley because you’re not getting the scary, cloying syrup that people are used to.”
The Shirley Temple is often viewed as a child’s drink, but you don’t have to be a kid to want a tasty nonalcoholic beverage. That’s why the Shirley Temple remains a fixture at bars, whether it’s featured on the menu or made on-the-spot for guests who ask for it. That said, kids still love it. “Children see a parent drinking a cocktail, and they want one too,” says Kenny.
1/2 ounce lemon juice, freshly squeezed
1/2 ounce lime juice, freshly squeezed
1 1/2 ounces housemade grenadine*
6 ounces club soda
Garnish: amarena cherries
Add the lemon juice, lime juice and then grenadine into a Collins glass.
Add ice, top with club soda and stir.
Garnish with 2 skewered amarena cherries.
*Housemade grenadine: In a pot over medium-low heat, bring 2 cups pomegranate juice to a simmer. Add 1/4 cup pomegranate molasses. Cool to room temperature. Add 2 cups sugar and stir until dissolved. Add 1 teaspoon orange flower water. Strain through a fine filter.