Saturday, April 17, 2010

Holland House

While perusing my mother's liquor cabinet this past Passover, I found, deep in the back, four bottles of mixer dating from the late '60's to early '70's. I've tried to search around to give a more precise date, but I can't find any good information on the bottles' history.

They are Holland House brand cocktail mixers for Whiskey Sour (two from different bottle eras), Daiquiri and Old Fashioned and they were manufactured in Woodside, Queens, which is where she lived when she purchased them. In essence, she was a locavore. One bottle still has the price of $1.69. Today,it sells for $4.49 and the photo on the bottle hasn't changed much.

Holland House was purchased by Mott's in the 1990's. They also make cooking wines.

According to this article, Holland House was possibly named after the hotel where a sour drink called the Widow's Kiss, was invented, the Holland House Hotel in New York in 1895.

And w
hose confidently sour mouth could have inspired the complex kick in the pants known as the Widow's Kiss, a pleasantly tongue-curling mix of Calvados, Benedictine, Chartreuse, lemon and Angostura bitters dreamed up in 1895 by George Kappeler of New York's Holland House Hotel?

The Holland House Hotel was on Fifth Avenue and 30th Street and still stands. It's an office building and in the ground floor has a Valley National Bank.

George Kappeler wrote a book about drink mixes in 1895 with a lot of weird ingredients. You can buy it for $29.95 here.

The first reference I find to Holland House drink mixes is in a 1949 ad in the Pittsburgh Press announcing how easy it is to make a cocktail now. The address is 126 W 22nd St. and it sold for 75 cents. By 1958 the address in the ads had changed to Woodside and was selling for 85 cents in Wisconsin.


Goggla said...

SO, I have to ask, did you drink it?? What a find!

Jill said...

It's funny that it never once crossed my mind to drink it until you wrote that!

Playa Del Carmen said...

And Hey! Do not forget to spare for us! Coming down there to you, do we mind drinking free wine, guys? :p


Bob said...

Jill...Under similar circumstances, I find myself in possession of 3 similar bottles...two of which are unopened...did you ever find someone interested in them?

Jill said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jill said...

Nobody interested, just biding their time in my morher's liquor cabinet