Mixology 101: Jack Rose

This the last cocktail of the six famous cocktails. It is probably the least famous cocktail of the david A. Embury ‘s coctails. Jack Rose is the name of a classic cocktail, popular in the 1920s and 1930s, containing applejack, grenadine, and lemon or lime juice. It notably appeared in a scene in Ernest Hemingway’s 1926 classic, The Sun Also Rises, in which Jake Barnes, the narrator, drinks a Jack Rose in a Paris hotel bar while awaiting the arrival of Lady Brett Ashley.

Last time I asked the cocktail at a bar the bartender told it is not available. Another one, said that if I tell him the ingredients he can make it but it turns out that it didn ‘t had any applejack… But it is a fine cocktail that you can enjoy.

The simplest explanation of the name is the fact that it is made with applejack and is rose colored from the grenadine. Also, it is possibly named after , or even invented by, the infamous hitman Jack Rose. Albert Stevens Crockett (Old Waldorf Bar Days, 1931) states that it is named after the pink Jacquemot (also known as Jacqueminot or Jacque) rose. In point of fact, the Jack Rose was actually invented by Joseph P. Rose, a Newark, NJ restauratur, and named by him “in honor” of a defendent in a trial then being held at the courthouse in that city. (Joseph P. Rose once held the title of “World’s Champion Mixologist.”)

The ingredients are simple:

  • 3 parts applejack
  • 2 parts lemon or lime juice
  • 2 dashes grenadine

Since we add lime/lemon juice the cocktail is fuse so you can shake. So just add them and shake them.

Few bars currently list the Jack Rose on their menu, one being the The Angel’s Share bar in New York City’s East Village, and another Southwark in Philadelphia. In June of 2003, the Washington Post published an article entitled “Searching for Jack; Two Guys, One Drink, 60 Bars,” that chronicled two writers’ quest to find a Jack Rose in a Washington, D.C. bar. After visiting seemingly countless bars, they were unsuccessful in finding one, ultimately buying a bottle of applejack for one of the few bartenders they encountered who knew how to make one. Laird & Company are the only current producers of applejack.

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Last modified: July 2, 2013 by Georgios Pyrgiotakis