Close Panel

Great Dames of Booze

Great Dames of Booze

As a woman lucky enough to be leading a team of many and varied great folk at Archie Rose, I am forever grateful to the women that have come before me. And so begins a dossier in tribute to these grand dames, starting with the tales of Madame Clicquot and Ada Coleman.

Around the same time that gin recipes were being refined in London, across the pond a 21-year-old noblewoman married into the Clicquot champagne family and thus become the title, Madame Clicquot. She learned all aspects of the production of champagne and the administration of the business from her husband Francois which proved fruitful when at the age of 27 he died. Madame Clicquot therefore took the reins, turning the business which became known as Veuve Clicquot (Widow Clicquot) into a global leviathan. She is credited with creating the first Vintage Champagne and the first Rose Champagne (and several innovations in the production methods of the house). A prolific networker (she penned over 100,000 letters in her lifetime) and a public relations master she worked the brand to international fame, and in her own lifetime, it became a powerhouse brand. 150 odd years after her death it is still to this day one of the most identified and iconic brands in the world.

The last two years of her life were crossed over with a young bartender Ada “Coley” Coleman. Ada Coleman was a lone woman in what was most certainly a man’s world. There were some women in pubs - usually family of the publican - and most of the time under 25, but women in cocktail bars or high end restaurants was unheard of. But Ada went to tend the bar at the Savoy and eventually became the head bartender (it took another century for the second woman to take that title).

Few bars have stood the tests of time and maintained their fame as the American Bar at the Savoy, but it was in part to Coley that the bar became so famous. It resided in that magical world between the moneyed upper classes and the scandalous thespians who kept the West End entertained. Coley threw parties of legend, and kept the wealthy lubricated. She mixed fancy drinks arriving by the day from the American New World, before prohibition, and the new ones that landed afterwards. The heyday of cocktails was served at least in the UK, by Ada Coleman. All bartenders hope to leave the world with a famous drink - and she left us with a doozy. Coley had a regular Charles Hawtrey, an actor, director and producer. Hawtrey was very famous then, but her drink will last longer. He complained of being tired and requested something with a bit of punch in it. She played around for a bit and came up with a bitter, boozy, beautiful beast. A shot of gin and a shot of sweet vermouth, so far so Gin and It, but then she spiked its velvet caress with a couple of dashes of Fernet Branca. Fernet Branca has lost count of its ingredients, or at least they don’t tell us exactly what’s in it. But it’s incredibly bitter and herbaceous. Just the ticket to take the edge off the cloying sweetness of the vermouth. Garnished with an orange twist. It’s perfection in a glass. And as Hawtrey described it “the real Hanky Panky”. Coley went on to train Harry Craddock. Craddock became the next celebrity bartender at the Savoy and some ten years later wrote what is still regarded as one of the cocktail books of influence. In it he featured his mentor’s drink, the Hanky Panky, a drink that is still on the list in the bar today.

If you haven’t tried a Hanky Panky and enjoy drinks in the Negroni/Manhattan part of the spectrum you will love the Hanky Panky. Drink it and bid cheers to these women who have changed our drinking for the better.

You may also be interested in

  • Why Gin is Women’s Business
    The production, service and communication of booze hasn’t been at the vanguard of equal opportunities - there have always been pockets of women in booze though.
    Read More
  • Signature Dry Gin
    Signature Dry Gin is our contemporary Australian take on a classic dry gin and the cornerstone gin in the Archie Rose Signature Range of core spirits. Re-imagined six years after its launch, this spirit delivers more complexity, character, and highlights the most incredible botanical ingredients available today.
    Shop
  • Hanky Panky
    Big, bold, and quite frankly perfect for celebrating International Women’s Day.
    View Recipe

Distillery

Book a tour:

Wednesday - Sunday
Subject to availability

Book Tour

Bar

Come in for a drink:


Archie Rose Bar. Monday-Sunday: CLOSED. Cellar Door spirit sales: Monday, Tuesday: CLOSED. Wednesday - Sunday: 10am til 5pm.

Food and Drinks Menu

Location

85 Dunning Ave
Rosebery NSW 2018

Open in Maps

Location

85 Dunning Ave
Rosebery NSW 2018

Open in Maps

Distillery

Book a tour:

Wednesday - Sunday
Subject to availability

Book Tour

Bar

Come in for a drink:

Archie Rose Bar Opening Hours
Tuesday: 4pm-10pm
Wednesday & Thursday: 4pm-11:30pm
Friday & Saturday: 12pm-11.30pm
Sunday: 12pm-10pm
Monday: Closed

Cellar Door Spirit Sales: Tuesday-Sunday: 10am-10pm. Monday: Closed

Food and Drinks Menu
Sign up to

A measured serve of craft distilling

Sign up for first access to new products plus other news, events, cocktails and our quarterly Archie's Journal.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Archie Rose Distilling Co. acknowledges and pays respect to the past, present and emerging traditional custodians of the lands on which we work and live, the Gweagal, Bidjigal and Gadigal Clans and the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation.

At Archie Rose we Drink Wise|Copyright © 2020 Archie Rose Distilling Co.|Design by Squad Ink|Built by Weekends

Are you of legal drinking age in


Yes
No

To experience this site you must be of legal drinking age in your country of residence. Please enjoy Archie Rose responsibly in countries where the consumption of alcohol is lawful, for persons who are lawfully permitted to consume alcohol. By entering this site you agree to our Terms and Conditions. Find out more at www.drinkwise.org.au. Archie Rose Distilling Co. Pty Limited Rights Reserved. Archie Rose Distilling Co. supports the Responsible Service of Alcohol. NSW Liquor Act 2007. It is against the law to sell or supply alcohol to, or to obtain alcohol on behalf of, a person under the age of 18 years. Liquor Producer Wholesaler Licence: LIQW880014624 | Liquor Hotel Licence: LIQH440018958

To experience this site you must be of legal drinking age in your country of residence. Please enjoy Archie Rose responsibly in countries where the consumption of alcohol is lawful, for persons who are lawfully permitted to consume alcohol. By entering this site you agree to our Terms and Conditions. Find out more at www.drinkwise.org.au. Archie Rose Distilling Co. Pty Limited Rights Reserved. Archie Rose Distilling Co. supports the Responsible Service of Alcohol. NSW Liquor Act 2007. It is against the law to sell or supply alcohol to, or to obtain alcohol on behalf of, a person under the age of 18 years. Liquor Producer Wholesaler Licence: LIQW880014624 | Liquor Hotel Licence: LIQH440018958