A Night Out: Repeal Day Ball

Think Festivus is the coolest December holiday? Put down that aluminum pole, stop the Airing of Grievances, and instead pick up a glass and make a toast to Repeal Day.

December 5 marked the anniversary of the day the 36th state ratified the 21st Amendment, effectively ending Prohibition. And Friday, the DC Craft Bartenders’ Guild said cheers to the 75th anniversary of Repeal Day and the return of legalized booze with cocktails, toasts, and dancing.

Read on for the best moments of the night.

City Tavern Club in Georgetown.

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A dapperly dressed crowd of bartenders, restaurateurs, and cocktail aficionados mixed and mingled over classic drinks mixed by locals Owen Thompson of Bourbon, Gina Chersevani of EatBar, Todd Thrasher of PX, and special guests such as Tony Abou-Ganim, host of Raising the Bar on the Fine Living Network.

A band played 1930s jazz for more than 300 guests—some wearing full flapper attire or offering a nod to the era with a fedora—who sipped their drinks and debated which was their favorite. A few guests really got into the swing of things, dancing the night away.

Best drink topper:
The meringuelike topping on Abou-Ganim’s Tom & Jerry cocktail that required him to keep three red Kitchen-Aid mixers whipping and frothing.

Drink that will settle the Mary-Ann-versus-Ginger debate:
Derek Brown and Museum of the American Cocktail founder Phil Greene’s Domaine de Canton cocktail. The liqueur, made with baby Vietnamese ginger, Cognac, ginseng, honey, and Tahitian vanilla bean, has a spicy kick that will leave you declaring your ginger love.

Best winter escape in a glass:
Gina Chersevani’s citrus cocktail made with Campari and Skyy vodka.

Swag-bag status:
Unless you happened upon the bartender handing out liquor leftovers—including almost-full bottles of Skyy vodka —the loot was your standard fare of key chains and promotional materials.

Warm-and-fuzzy feeling:
Even after you lost the tipsy buzz, you could feel good knowing that proceeds benefited the City Tavern Club’s Preservation Fund and the Museum of the American Cocktail.


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