Here in Wisconsin, at a little hole-in-the-wall gas station, I ran across a bottle of booze that looked like it was just pulled from a prohibition basement.
It was Jacquin’s Rock and Rye – the label alone has clearly never been altered. So although I knew it would probably taste like gasoline- i had to take it home.
A little googling this morning shed some light: “as early barroom staple, made its way into the medicine cabinet during the temperance movement” Full story on Saveur
Apparently, around the turn of the 20th century, makers of Rock and Rye blurred the line between remedy and refreshment. Bottled versions made were produced by Charles Jacquin et Cie (in production since 1884, it really is the only pre-Prohibition survivor)
I found some Bottling notes from Master of Malt:
“A gorgeous liqueur from Jacquin’s. Rock and Rye is an old-fashioned American liqueur made with sugar (the rock) and rye whiskey. They make this with rock sugar and add chopped pieces of fruit. It is delicious over ice”
As it turns out, Jacquin’s also concocts a ginger-flavored brandy
So then, as always… i found myself falling down the rabbit hole of vintage-booze-packaging-amazingness to find:
(its all too much. I’m about to tell David that we need to recreate a prohibition era bar. I am thinking that the basement would be a good spot. It seems perfect, given that it was the original gambling for the madame back in the 20’s- and even after prohibition, where she served booze untaxed by the government.)
some other amazing liqour labels i found stumbling through the interwebs: