Prairie oyster (cocktail)

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A prairie oyster (or prairie cocktail) is a drink consisting of a raw egg, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, salt and ground black pepper. The egg is broken into a glass so as not to break the yolk, which causes the drink to bear a similarity to the texture of an actual oyster. The drink is typically served as a hangover cure.



Crack the egg into a glass, leaving the yolk unbroken. Douse it with Worcestershire sauce, a sprinkling of salt and pepper, and Tabasco sauce.[1]

In popular culture[edit]

  • In the 1936 film "Mr. Deeds Goes to Town", Longfellow Deeds (Gary Cooper) is served a Prairie Oyster by his servant Walter (played by Raymond Walburn) to "make his head feel smaller" when he is suffering from a hangover.
  • In the 1937 film "A Star is Born" Fredric March (Norman Maine) has a Prairie Oyster at the bar to cure his hangover when he spies Janet Gaynor (Vicky Lester) and begins a conversation.
  • In the 1942 Preston Sturges film "The Palm Beach Story", between 47:39 and 48:23, Rudy Vallee's and Claudette Colbert's characters order Prairie oysters on the New York to Miami train, which cost 25 cents each.
  • In the 1959 film "The Nun's Story (film)" the character Gaby is given the drink to aid her in recovery from suspected tuberculosis.
  • The drink features early-on in the 1972 film adaptation of Cabaret, being drunk by actress Liza Minnelli as a hangover cure offered to her love interest and co-star Michael York.
  • In the 1990 film "Back to the Future Part III", Marty poured the "wake up juice" into Doc's stomach to wake him up after he instantly pass out from a shot of whiskey in the Old West.
  • In the 1993 film "Addams Family Values", Gomez Addams (played by Raul Julia) is seen preparing a decidedly alcohol-filled, salt-and-pepper-free version of the cocktail in a baby bottle for his newborn, Pubert, saying "Hail to the Pup!"
  • In the 2001 film "The Man Who Wasn't There", the attorney Freddy Riedenschneider (played by Tony Shalhoub) orders a prairie oyster in the cafe on the morning he meets Ed Crane (played by Billy Bob Thornton).
  • In "Heathers: the Musical" Heather Chandler asks Veronica to make her this drink.
  • In the Japanese animated series Cowboy Bebop, the main character Spike Spiegel is seen making a prairie oyster to help with a hangover in the episode Heavy Metal Queen. The bartender however, adds one or two shots of what appears to be gin; as the bottle reads the word 'BOOFEATER', most likely referencing Beefeater Gin.
  • Jeeves frequently cures Bertie Wooster's hangovers in the P G Wodehouse novels and stories with what Wooster refers to by such locutions as "one of those magic thingies of yours": in fact a prairie-oyster.
  • In the 1970s television sitcom, "The Jeffersons", the character Tom (Franklin Cover) is given the drink by his daughter, Jenny (Berlinda Tolbert), the morning after the Willis' attendance of a party. She served the drink with tomato juice. (Season 2, Episode 17 "The Break-Up, Part 2")
  • In the television show, "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip", the character Jack Rudolph (played by Steven Weber) asks Simon Styles (played by D.L. Hugely) if he knows where to get a Prairie Oyster (implying one would be hard to find). When Simon says he has one in his dressing room, Jack replies "Who are you? Sinatra?". (Season 1, Episode 14 "The Harriett Dinner, Part 2")

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Wondrich, David. "Prairie Oyster". Esquire.