It is Thanksgiving-time and a couple of drinks suggest themselves. The Thanksgiving Toddy is found in the bar book compiled by Waldorf Hotel bartender Joseph Taylor between 1894 and 1920. It is one of the cocktail-like drinks in that source with the line “no bitters.” The cocktail was also known as the bittered sling, and if you leave bitters out of one, it just falls back into being a sling, or a toddy if it is garnished with citrus zest. The orange zest in the source makes it very clear. The Thanksgiving Toddy is a very appropriate drink in that last hour before sitting down to a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. I recommend cutting two strips of orange zest as free of pith as possible and actually stirring one of them with the rest of the drink before straining.
Millions of Americans will spend some part of Thanksgiving day watching American Football. The Quarterback Cocktail would make a nice re-appetizer just in time for some pie about an hour after the dinner, itself. The Quarterback Cocktail is found in the 1934 book, “Pioneers of Mixing at Elite Bars,” by ‘American Traveling Mixologists.’
Postscript – In a few weeks, the Army & Navy game will be upon us, so here are the Army & Navy Sour and the Army & Navy Cocktail. I adapted the cocktail from the original sour (found in David Embury’s 1948 book, “The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks”) by adding bitters and scaling back the critical ingredients to cocktail-appropriate amounts.