Shaw’s Tavern Cocktail List with Awesome History Included

520 Florida Ave, NW

I just saw the new cocktail list on the Shaw’s Tavern Facebook page. I’m digging all the history:

54th Regiment Cocktail
The 54th Regiment convened at Camp Meigs, MA in 1863 as one of the first all-African American units in the Civil War. Former slaves freed by the Emancipation Proclamation composed the majority of the unit. In short order, the 54th became one of the most legendary groups of men to fight for the US.

Jim Beam Rye Whisky, Dry Vermouth, Celery Bitters, Peychaud’s Bitters

Shaw’s Fizz
In 1863, 25 year old Robert Gould Shaw was tipped to lead the 54th Massachusetts, one of the first all-black regiments in the US military. He led them in a fateful assault on Ft. Wagner, S. Carolina, in which he died and was buried in a mass grave with his soldiers. Nobility at its finest!

Hangar Raspberry Vodka, Lemon, Triple Sec, Soda

Beacon St. Stomp
On May 28, 1863, Shaw led the 54th on a parade down beacon street to Boston Wharf where they departed to join the war down south. Along the way raptours crowd cheered them on. This drink commemorates that celebratory moment as this legendary group marched into battle.

Sparkling Wine, Tequila, Pomegranate Molasses

$7 Cocktail
Though promised equal pay to white soldiers – $13 per month – the men of the 54th only received $7. C Eighteen months after entering the war, Congress finally granted equal pay to black soldiers.

Jim Beam Rye, El Dorado 5 Rum, Orange Bitters

Ft. Wagner Mission
On July18, 1863, Shaw led the 54th on a fateful mission to capture Ft. Wagner, S. Carolina. Almost assured of defeat, the troops fought heroically. It was a bittersweet moment: despite losing the battle and suffering heavy casualties, the regiment was celebrated for its bravery. Their action led to the further mobilization of black troops , tipping the war in the Union’s favor.

Citrus Vodka, Habanero syrup, Lemon, Cassis, Soda

Carney’s Courage
During the Ft. Wagner mission, the 54th’s flag-bearer was killed. 23 year old Sgt. William Carney grabbed the flag and with his body riddled with bullets, managed to return the flag to Union lines, saying “boys, the old flag never touched the ground.” Carney later received the Medal of Honor for courageously protecting the flag.

Bols Genever (aka Dutch Courage), Lemon, Honey, Wheat Beer, Angostura

First Sgt. Robert Simmons stated that he joined the 54th to fight “for glory.” Thereafter, the 54th became known as the “Glory Regiment,” a testament to their courage, heroism and determination to win in fierce battle.

Sparkling Wine, Duck-Rabbit Milk Stout, Cassis

21 Comment

  • Not only do the drinks sound amazing but the history behind each one is incredible. Looking forward to my first taste of “Glory.”

  • The history is interesting, and the drinks sound great… but the only instance where there seems to be any real connection between the story and the drink is the $7 Cocktail.

    Not a bad way of working the history into the menu, though!

  • claire

    These cocktails look awesome! Can’t wait to try the Ft. Wagner Mission – sounds similar to my favorite cocktail in the city (the Mexican Showdown at Fruit Bat – habanero infused tequila with cassis).

  • Wait…didn’t they get denied a liqour license?

    • The original owners were denied, but the new owners received the license a few weeks ago. It is a new owner who knows not to forge documents.

  • Whenever I read comments it seems like this place gets a lot of support. I’ve never been and haven’t spent time in the neighborhood. What makes it great?

    • Well, among other things it’s got a cool building. It’s a great place for brunch.

      • What makes it great? The fact that it is THE only option in the neighborhood. Residents have nothing else and that makes this place (whether it is or not) the defacto “great” place.

        • Au contraire. We’ve got Bistro Bohem, Beau Thai, and a bit further east, we’ve got Boundary Stone and Rustik. And that’s just getting started. We’re excited about Shaw’s Tavern because it’s a GORGEOUS spot, with a great menu, and because as a neighborhood, we tend to embrace the businesses that take a chance on us.

  • as someone in the history biz and a lover of cocktails, this brings me much delight.

  • I like the drink list and histories. Unfortunately, I can’t be e as complimentary about ST’s food. I ate there during its 2-week illegal run, and the food was phenomenal. This iteration, I think it’s very hit or miss. I got a pizza-thing a few weeks ago that was so salty it was nearly inedible. Some of the folks dining with me liked their food while others thought “meh.” I’m glad ST is doing well, but I can’t get myself to eat there anymore.

    • I went there recently, and I found the food to be excellent. Maybe they are just working out the kinks since they expanded their menu a few weeks ago.

      • I hope you’re right. I probably should’ve sent the pizza back so they would know it was disgusting and, hopefully, adjust their ingredients appropriately.

  • I love the drink-list as history – brilliant (and novel)! for DC, at least, at long last. I’m most curious about Ft. Wagner Mission but wonder if it would be pretty sweet in addition to the heat. From the listed, I’d probably be most drawn to 54th Regiment Cocktail or 7$ Cocktail.

  • austindc

    This is great because I can learn something, get smashed, forget what I learned, and then be amazed at how much I’m learning the next time I come. Are you listening Smithsonian?

  • What is worse 1.) getting killed in the Civil War or 2.) having a drink named after you with Hangar Raspberry Vodka?

  • had a delicious dinner there 2 weeks ago. awesome soup, barley risotto with yummy veggies, husband loved the hanger steak. and the bartender poured me a fantastic old fashioned. only complaint: our bill at the end of the night was STEEP.

    their pastry basket at brunch is fab.

  • As a neighborhood resident, I can attest to the fact that our options are very limited. Although the service is better than Bistro Boehm, the staff has openly told me that they “don’t particularly cater to people who don’t eat meat”. Couple that with the fact that they’re completely overpriced, and, well, we will not be going back.

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