The Museum of the American Cocktail

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The Museum of the American Cocktail is a nonprofit organization dedicated to education in mixology and preserving the rich history of the American cocktail.


The Museum of the American Cocktail was founded in October 2004 by renowned mixologists, spirits experts, and food and drink writers. The current Board of Directors include Dale DeGroff (president), Jill DeGroff (vice president), Robert Hess (secretary), Ted Haigh (curator; aka “Dr. Cocktail”), Bruce Tomlinson (treasurer), Tim McNally, Brenda Maitland, Ti Martin, Chris McMillian, and Laura McMillian.

In January 2005, the Museum of the American Cocktail opened an exhibit in New Orleans, at the New Orleans Pharmacy Museum. After Hurricane Katrina, the Museum moved its collection to Commander's Palace, Las Vegas, where the collection was on display until November 2006. The exhibit, curated by Ted Haigh, included rare books, Prohibition-era literature and music, vintage cocktail shakers, glassware, tools, gadgets, memorabilia, and photographs from the collections of the founders.

While searching for a permanent exhibition space to house its collection, the Museum of the American Cocktail produces temporary exhibits and events, and publishes a website, a monthly newsletter, and an annual journal titled Mixologist. In May 2006, the Museum published The Museum of the American Cocktail Pocket Recipe Guide, a pocket-sized book of cocktail tips, techniques and 100 classic recipes.

Return to New Orleans[edit]

The Museum returned to New Orleans in July of 2008. Its new home is in the Southern Food and Beverage Museum. The Museum of the American Cocktail showcases a collection of rare spirits and books including Prohibition-era literature. There will also be antique cocktail shakers, glassware, recorded music, graphics, paper ephemera, fabrics, bartending tools, and examples of the cocktail's impact on broader historical trends. The museum will feature tastings associated with specific events and seminars, but will not, itself, be a bar. [1]

The Olives[edit]

In association with the United States Bartenders Guild, the Museum of the American Cocktail annually presents the American Cocktail Awards (the "Olives").[2] Awards are given to establishments and individuals for individual pre-dinner cocktail recipes and execution, and overall cocktail list development.

The First Annual American Cocktail Awards were held on May 13, 2006, in New York City, and at Commander's Palace, Las Vegas. The winning cocktail was "The Wet Spot" by Will Shine and Aisha Sharpe, head bartenders at B.E.D. New York in New York City.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Foster, Mary (2008-07-01). ""Cocktail museum shakes and stirs history"". Associated Press. Retrieved 2008-07-01. 
  2. ^ Hugh Rawson "What Do We Say...? Cocktail," American Heritage, June/July 2006.

External links[edit]