The Celluloid Pantry: Whiskey & Ginger and Anna Christie (1930)

Garbo talks! And her first order of business? She orders a drink.

Although, at the age of 24, Greta Garbo was already one of MGM’s biggest stars, her voice remained a mystery to her fans. The enigmatic Swedish actress had already acted in thirteen American films, but every one of them was silent.

But cinematic history was soon to be made with Anna Christie (1930). Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Eugene O’Neill, the much-anticipated talking picture starred Garbo as a world-weary streetwalker.

Still, audiences were made to wait. It isn’t until over fifteen minutes into the film that the title character makes her grand entrance. Slinking into a seedy New York waterfront bar, she pulls up a chair. And for the very first time we hear Garbo’s distinctive, husky voice:

“Gimme a whiskey, ginger ale on the side. And don’t be stingy, baby!”

Whiskey & Ginger (a.k.a. Horse’s Neck or Hero’s Neck)
makes one highball

1 ½ oz. whiskey
ginger ale
lemon peel

Place a few ice cubes in a highball glass. Cut lemon peel into a long, spiraling strip, and drape over the side of the glass. Add whiskey, top up with ginger ale, and stir gently.

- Nora