The Celluloid Pantry: Upper-Berth Manhattans and Some Like It Hot (1959)

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A little ingenuity will always make up for a lack of equipment.

In Some Like it Hot (1959), two down-on-their-luck musicians, Joe and Jerry (Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon) are on the lam, disguised as women after witnessing the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre in 1929 Chicago.

Packed into a train headed to Florida with the members of an all-girl band, whose Prohibition-era regulations forbid alcohol and men, Joe and Jerry have a tough time keeping their cover.

But things really heat up when band mate Sugar Kane (Marilyn Monroe) stops by to visit her new friend Daphne (Jerry) in her (his) upper-berth bed. Word soon gets out to the rest of the girls and an impromptu cocktail party breaks out: “I have whiskey…" "I have vermouth…." "Does anyone have any maraschino cherries?"

While Sugar chips ice, using a drumstick as an improvised pick and a cymbal as an makeshift tray, the rest of the girls mix up the vermouth and bourbon in a hot water bottle “shaker,” pouring the Manhattans into paper cups from the train’s dispenser.

Whether your home bar is first class or freight, the Manhattan is a classic cocktail that’s easy to shake up with a few simple ingredients.

May you always get the sweet end of the lollipop!

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Upper-Berth Manhattan Cocktail
(makes 1)

1-3/4 oz. rye or bourbon
2/3 oz. sweet vermouth
dash of bitters

Combine in a cocktail shaker over ice. Shake, strain and pour into a glass. Garnish with a maraschino cherry.

- Nora