In the 1920s, despite the ladies loosening up their corsets to get down on the dance floor, legal spots to indulge in a drink or two were nowhere to be found. The Roaring ‘20s wasn’t always all that jazz, due in large part to Prohibition (1920-1933), a dark time in cocktail history when alcohol was — gasp! — illegal.
However, this didn’t mean that big shots and their babes couldn’t get their drink on without the bulls finding out (that’s uniformed police for you budding bosses and flappers). Patrons in search of luscious libations attended speakeasies, secret spots where bartenders created spiked drinks, all while attempting to mask the strong taste of gin and other forbidden spirits.
While this period of Prohibition is thankfully long over, the style of the era is now making a comeback in everything from television (think Boardwalk Empire) to films, including the highly anticipated Baz Luhrmann remake of The Great Gatsby, originally written by the king of the ‘20s, F. Scott Fitzgerald. Even speakeasies, still without signs and hidden within the shadows of abandoned streets, remain popular in cities like Manhattan, but you don’t have to head to the city in search of the perfectly legal pour. Check out these sinfully delicious recipes, all featuring gin, the preferred poison of the Jazz Age.