Pell – Recipe from the ‘Old Waldorf Bar Guide’

Its name was a tribute to Archie Pell, long one of the handsomest and best dressed beaux in New York. 

No Bitters 

One-half Italian Vermuth 

One-half Nicholson Gin 

One Olive

I must admit I was a little disappointed not to be able to find any reference to the Dapper Archie Pell, I did find a reference to a house potentially built for his wife, of more interest is the history of Pell street and Doyers street in downtown Manhattan. This from the 1880’s right through until the 1990’s was known as the bloody angle, a street in downtown bent at a right angle around which streamed into rickety dwellings thousands of Chinese immigrants. Sadly a rather xenophobic ruling in the 1880’s made it awkward for female Chinese to enter the country so what resulted was manhattans own version of the barbary coast laid along this pokey street, a bent road filled with gangs, opium dens, prostitutes and gambling houses, a site of so much violent gang warfare that this section of the street swiftly became known as the ‘bloody angle’.

I suspect that the very handsome beaux that was Archie Pell spent little time frequenting the street of his namesake, uptown and downtown did not mix 140 years ago, and it sounds like if you were venturing there without a cadre of Navy Seals, or Bill the Butcher and his Americans then you were fair game, and to be honest I’d rather be there with Bill than the Seals.

I went delightfully off piste with this drink, on gazing over our gin selection and realising we no longer stocked Nicholson’s I tried truffle gin from the Cambridge Distillery, which is incredibly aromatic, but doesn’t have a massive amount of favour, somehow the brine from the olive bought out flavour in the gin (its that old salt or sugar makes everything taste better thing) and for the first time in my life I enjoyed a drink with an olive inside. Give it a try, with truffle gin.