Harry Craddock was one of the most famous cocktail barmen of the 1920s and 1930s. He’s famously known as the head bartender at the world famous Savoy Hotel in Strand, London where in 1930 he authored The Savoy Cocktail Book.
Harry Craddock was born in Stroud, England in 1875. He left the England in 1897 for a better life in the U.S. and eventually became a U.S. citizen in 1916. Harry stayed in New York until 1920 when Prohibition hit the U.S. It’s said that Harry claimed to have mixed the last legal drink in the United States before the long dark period of Prohibition took effect.
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With Prohibition in full force, Harry left the U.S and headed back to England and ended up as a bartender at the legendary Savoy Hotel. He’s known to have served many famous people of the age including Ava Gardner, Errol Flynn, Charlie Chaplin and Vivien Leigh. In 1926 Harry Craddock became the head bartender at the Savoy.
Harry was a collector of cocktail recipes. In 1930 at the request of the Savoy, he compiled The Savoy Cocktail Book. It was a collection of over 2,000 recipes that Craddock compiled from his years as a bartender. 86 years later, The Savoy Cocktail Book is still in print and is still known one of the most important cocktail books of the 20th century. You can get your own copy of The Savoy Cocktail Book here.
Here are 10 sample recipes from this classic book including his original White Lady. It also includes Hanky Panky, Mai Tai, Dry Martini, Whisky Sour, Harvey Wallbanger, Margarita, Espresso Margarita, a re-imagined Nitrogen Caipirinha and a classic Sazerac.
Click the image to see The Savoy Cocktail infographic at full size.