A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from June 11, 2013
Grasshopper (cocktail)

The Grasshopper cocktail is made with one-third crème de menthe (providing the green color, like the color of a grasshopper), one-third drème de cacao and one-third cream. The cocktail has been cited in print since at least February 1950, when it was said to be popular in the midwest. An issue of the March 1950 New York (NY) Herald Tribune credited the drink to Fazio’s Restaurant in Milwaukee, Wisconsin; in September 1950, someone wrote in giving credit to Charlie’s in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

The drink is often credited to Tujague’s, a landmark bar in the French Quarter of New Orleans, Louisiana, but the early “Grasshopper” citations from 1950 do not credit any establishment in New Orleans. However, the May 16, 1975 Times-Picayune (New Orleans, LA), recorded the death of long-time Tujague’s owner Philip John Guichet Sr. and stated: “In 1928-30, he won the New York contest for cocktail mixing with his ‘Grasshopper’ creation.”

The 1950s Grasshopper cocktail is said to have inspired the Grasshopper pie. “A grasshopper walks into a bar...” is a joke that plays upon the Grasshopper cocktail name.


Wikipedia: Grasshopper (cocktail)
A grasshopper is a sweet, mint-flavored, after-dinner drink. The name of the drink is derived from its green color, which is provided by the crème de menthe. The drink reputedly originated at Tujague’s, a landmark bar in the French Quarter of New Orleans, Louisiana, and gained popularity during the 1950s and 1960s throughout the American South.

Composition
A typical grasshopper cocktail consists of equal parts green Crème de menthe, white Crème de cacao and fresh cream, shaken with ice and strained into a chilled cocktail glass.

20 February 1950, Boston (MA) Traveler, “Take It From Me” by Neal O’Hara, pg. 43, col. 1:
Currently popular in the midwest is the Grasshopper Cocktail, which has a pleasant bright green color and is made of equal parts of green creme de menthe, white creme de cacao and light cream, blended on a high-speed mixer and served in a 4-ounce cocktail glass.

4 September 1950, New York (NY) Herald Tribune, pg. 11, col. 6:
GRASSHOPPERS—In March we mentioned the Grasshopper cocktail, met for the first time at a wine and food tasting, and credited its creation to Fazio’s Restaurant in Milwaukee. The cocktail, in case you have forgotten, is made with one-third Bols white cacao, one-third Bols green creme de menthe and one-third light cream in a quick shake with shaved ice.  The drink pours a soft pastel green, palate caressing and sweet enough to be served as dessert.

Norden Van Horne, of Rye, N. Y., writes we are wrong on the Grasshopper’s origin. “The drink appeared first at Charlie’s in Minneapolis.” Also he thinks two parts of green creme de menthe in one of the clear and the result is more appealing.

While at the aforementioned Charlie’s Mr. Van Horne chanced upon another fine mixture which he calls a cross between a Grasshopper and a Brandy Alexander and a stinger. He admits it sounds sort of hideous, but promises that a sip will quell any misapprehensions. It goes under the sinister title of Didy-Wah-Didie.  The proportions are as follows: 2 parts brandy, 1 part green creme de menthe, 1 part brown (or white) creme de cacao, and 1 healthy dash of cream. Our reporter adds, “this is no mere concoction, thrown together in the heat of some wild blast, but rather is a carefully prepared mixture, designed to rather subtle but effective and swift disintegration of man’s rationality.”

The Wikitender: Grasshopper
Historical Recipes
“Daily Herald”, Chicago, Illinois, 5th February 1953
1/3—White Creme De Cacao
1/3—Green Creme De Menthe
1/3—Cream

Shake with cracked ice Strain into cocktail Glass .

16 May 1975, The Times-Picayune (New Orleans, LA), sec. 1, pg. 16, col. 2:
TUJAGUE’S
OWNER DIES
Philip John Guichet Sr., owner of Tujegue’s Restaurant in the French Quarter, died at 6 a.m. Thursday in Baptist hospital after a long illness. he was 78.
(...)
In 1928-30, he won the New York contest for cocktail mixing with his “Grasshopper” creation.

Guichet was co-owner of the 118-year-old restaurant at 823 DecaturSt. for 42 years and sole owner for the past 13 years.

The Drinks Cabinet
Sunday, 22 August 2010
Crème de menthe
(...)
The classic crème de menthe cocktail is called The Grasshopper.  Wikipedia claim it was invented in New Orleans.  It sounds even heavier than that which has gone before - Crème de menthe, crème de cacao and fresh cream.  A “Stinger”, meanwhile, is 3 parts brandy to one part (white) crème de menthe.  J is not sure he’d want to drink mint flavoured brandy but there’s no accounting for taste.

Food Republic
Feb 7, 2013 4:02 pm
A Toast To The Cocktails Of New Orleans
The Big Easy has an impressive history of drinking

By Simon Ford
(...)
The Grasshopper
If you are a fan of creamy cocktails, as well as the combination of chocolate and mint, this is the drink for you. Despite the fact that the drink has acquired a bit of a cheesy reputation, probably due to its becoming popular in the dark ages of the cocktail in the 1950s and 60s, I have to admit that it is one of my guilty pleasures. The Grasshopper was allegedly created at Tujague’s, located on the corner of Decatur and Madison. Originally built in 1856, the bar is still there today. While you may very well find more pleasure drinking Abita beer there than a Grasshopper, I still think that the drink is worth revisiting at some point.

The Grasshopper
1 ounce crème de menthe
1 ounce crème de cacao
1 ounce cream

Shake ingredients and strain into a cocktail coupe.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityFood/Drink • Tuesday, June 11, 2013 • Permalink