With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, we offer you a classic cocktail for lovers. The “Hanky Panky” was created by Ada Coleman, the head bartender of the Savory hotel circa 1920’s. As the story is told, she created the drink for actor Charles Hawtrey who was looking for something strong to take the edge off his day. When presented with this winning combination, he exclaimed, “By Jove! That is the real Hanky-Panky!” The rest is history. The drink was included the 1930, Savoy Cocktail Book and over time has fallen into obscurity save for the few craft bars that pay homage to this worthy drink. It is a strong, subtly sweet drink finishing with a slight bitter bite from the Fernet Branca. They are the perfect prelude to a romantic evening but imbiber beware too many may lead to an interlude and Hanky Panky.
The Hanky Panky
In a cocktail shaker filled with ice add:
- 1 ½ Ounces Italian Sweet Vermouth (we suggest Carpano Antica)
- 1 ½ Ounces London Dry Gin (our preference is Boodles)
- 2 dashes Fernet Branca
Shake, Stir, Strain into a stemmed cocktail glass. Garnish by squeezing an orange peel over the top.