Growing up on archaeological dig sites, MIkey Pendergast, the East London Liquor Company’s Bar Manager, spent a lot of time with the world’s favourite fictional fossil finder, Indiana Jones. During his quest for the Holy Grail, the explorer named after his dog ends up in the Castle Brunwald where he traveled to find his father, portrayed in the film by Sean Connery. Upon his arrival, Jones Jr. discovers that the castle houses a Nazi intelligence operation. Indy’s idiosyncratic antics ensue.

Although the Jones Boys accidentally succeed in burning down one of Castle Brunwald’s main rooms, the palace’s real-life representation - Schloss Bürresheim - has remained intact for nearly nine centuries making it more a lesson in history than in archaeology. The German castle, situated in the Rhineland-Palatinate approximately thirty kilometres west of Koblenz, has never been destroyed nor conquered despite the multitudes of war, revolution and turmoil witnessed in the area over the centuries. 

Built in the 12th Century, the castle changed family hands a number of times throughout its history before successive departments of the German government became its protectorate somewhat ironically during the late 1930s rise of Hitler and the Nazis. 

A fictional Nazi played a role in Mikey’s inspiration for his cocktail, Grandma was a Classy Lady. The younger Jones, who had not discovered that his amorous interest, Dr. Elsa Schneider played by Irish actress Allison Doody, was a Nazi, asks his father how he had figured out her secret. Jones Senior then alludes to his own romantic encounter with Schneider by responding, “She talks in her sleep.”

Grandma was a Classy Lady was born from this quote. “For some reason, I imagined Jones’ father and Schneider as an old couple drinking Sherry Cobblers. So I made an updated hipster tribute to the cocktail.” 

As you taste Mikey’s creation, try not to laugh. You’ll do better than Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade’s film crew. Connery completely improvised the inspiration line, causing those on set to simultaneously burst out in hysterical laughter to which Director Steven Spielberg responded, “Well, that’s in.” 

Grandma Was A Classy Lady

  • 30ml East London Liquor Company batch 1 gin
  • 30ml Amontillado Sherry
  • 20ml Pineapple Syrup
  • a dash of Pedro Ximenez 

 Pour all the ingredients into a rocks glass and churn over crushed ice.  Garnish with a butterscotch candy (Werther’s original maybe?)

 Pairs well with: pickled walnuts and stinky cheeses

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