Cocktail & Other Recipes By Spirit Other Cocktails

Golden Cadillac

Golden Cadillac cocktail in a coupe glass, garnished with chocolate shavings
Image: / Tim Nusog

The Golden Cadillac dates back to 1952 when it was first concocted at Poor Red’s, a bar in El Dorado, California. As the story goes, a couple came in asking for a unique cocktail, and the bartender mixed together a drink with Galliano, white creme de cacao and heavy cream, calling it the Golden Cadillac after the couple’s shiny new car. Many decades later, the drink remains a fixture at Poor Red’s.

While the Golden Cadillac has exhibited staying power, at least among retro cocktail lovers, it enjoyed particular popularity through the 1970s, when Galliano was king. The Italian liqueur, which was created in 1896 from a recipe that includes star anise, juniper, lavender, cinnamon and vanilla, pumped up cocktails like the Harvey Wallbanger and Fuzzy Navel, two common calls during the ’70s. Today, Galliano doesn’t get as much airtime behind bars, but it’s worth breaking out the tall, recognizable bottle to make the Golden Cadillac.

Fortunately, it is a very easy cocktail to make—the three ingredients are used in equal parts, which takes math out of the equation. Shake the Galliano, white creme de cacao and heavy cream with ice and strain the mixture into your glass. If you’re feeling decadent, adorn the surface with some freshly shaved chocolate. The result is a rich and creamy cocktail sporting flavors of vanilla, chocolate and anise. It’s sweet, but the herbal Galliano brings more complexity than most people expect from a drink that looks like dessert in a glass.


  • 1 ounce Galliano L’Autentico liqueur

  • 1 ounce white creme de cacao

  • 1 ounce heavy cream

  • Garnish: chocolate shavings


  1. Add the Galliano, white creme de cacao, and heavy cream into a shaker with ice and shake until well-chilled.

  2. Strain into a cocktail glass or coupe glass.

  3. Garnish with freshly shaved chocolate.