City Spirits

Have you ever wondered if some of your favorite cocktails that are named after cities, were done so because that is where they were invented? Let's look at these 3 popular city-named spirits.



Manhattan: The Manhattan has a couple different stories. The first is that it was invented by Dr. Iain Marshal at the Manhattan Club in New York City in the 1870s. He was rumored to invent it for presidential candidate Samuel J. Tilden, who later was beat by Rutherford B. Hayes. The drink was originally made with American Whiskey, Italian Vermouth and Angostura Bitters. During prohibition however, Canadian Whiskey replaced the America because it was available.


Other accounts site that it was made in the 1860s by a bartender referred to as “Black” at a bar in Manhattan on Broadway street. Either way it has become a delicious cocktail enjoyed by many in and out of the Big Apple.


Long Island Iced Tea: Another drink with a few different creation stories. The first time the drink appears in literature is 1961, which will lead you to believe it had to be invented before that time. However, the drink is credited to Robert Butt who submitted the famous drink to a contest for coming up with a new cocktail that contained triple sec. Butt did this in 1972 while working at Oak Beach Inn on Long Island.


The other story, which would seem more likely due to the date was made during the 1920s during prohibition. A man referred to as “Old Man Bishop” in a town called Long Island near Kingsport, Tennessee made a drink with Whiskey, maple syrup, and 5 different kinds of liquor.


Today Long Islands are made with cola and 4 equal parts of liquor.


Champagne: Champagne is undoubtedly named after Champagne, France. Technically, only sparkling wines with grapes grown in the Champagne region of France can be called Champagne, others must be called sparkling wines.


According to history, it was invented near the 5th century. Originally the grapes for this bubbly beverage were grown by Romans then later by churches, specifically monks. Champagne has a rich history that still holds true today. Originally French Kings were anointed in Reims and served Champagne as part of the coronation. The oldest recorded sparkling wine ever invented was by a Benedictine Monk in the Abbey of Saint-Hilaire. Because of how long Champagne has been around there is still debate of exactly how it came to be one of the most coveted drinks in the world.