June is pride month, celebrating lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender pride. While the current political climate has made it difficult for some brands to honor the LGBTQ community, many beverage alcohol and hospitality brands have long understood the importance of diversity.
On-premise operators in particular step up each year with special pride promotions and drinks. For instance, Fonda restaurant in New York, from the acclaimed Mexican Chef Roberto Santibañez, is partnering with Supergay vodka this June.
A portion of proceeds from the sale of two specialty cocktails at Fonda, created with Supergay vodka, will benefit SAGE, the world’s largest and oldest organization dedicated to improving the lives of LGBTQ+ elders. The House of Fonda cocktail combines Supergay vodka, lemon juice, lychee, Luxardo liqueur and Angostura bitters, and the Purple Pose mixes Supergay vodka, St. Germain elderflower liqueur, Champagne and club soda, with a lemon twist.
Broken Shaker at Freehand New York has two cocktail specials for the month of June: the Berry Proud Margarita, with El Jimador tequila, Chambord, strawberry, lime and a spicy rim, and the Stride Of Pride with Don Julio Primavera, blackberry, lavender shrub, lemon and Perrier.
Sam Droney, general manager of Patchwork restaurant and bar at the Hyatt Centric Center City in Philadelphia, has created The Mattachine. Named after the early activist group, The Mattachine Society, the cocktail is shaken with vodka, Lillet Blanc, ginger and lemon.
It’s then poured over a boozy hibiscus ice cube and sprinkled with fairy dust (edible glitter). As the hibiscus cube melts, the cocktail changes color, transforming from a bright chartreuse to a dark pink.
The Mattachine, priced at $17, will be available at Patchwork for all of June; $2 from each cocktail sold will go to The William Way LGBT Community Center.
The Beacon Grand hotel in San Francisco is celebrating Pride with a month-long specialty cocktail – the Rainbows End. Giving back to the local community, Beacon Grand will donate a portion of the proceeds from every Rainbows End sold to the San Francisco AIDS Foundation.
Inspired by the Progress Pride Flag, the Rainbows End cocktail features St. Germain, Grey Goose vodka, sparking wine, lemon juice and mint, topped with rainbow candy and bright florals. The cocktail for a cause is available for sipping in the signature restaurant, Beacon Lounge, and the hidden Library bar.
Lead bartender Franklin “Frankie” Jones curated a selection of Pride Week cocktails at Buffalo & Bergen in Washington, DC. One is the Daddies Need Love Too!, which combines Don Q coconut rum and Jameson Irish whiskey plus lemon lavender syrup, coconut milk and Jamaican bitters #1. The Save a Horse, inspired by the song from country stars Big & Rich, “Save a Horse! Ride a Cowboy,” is a twist on an Old Fashioned, with mint, lemon and cardamom syrup, and 100-proof Nashville Barrel Bourbon.
The Sheraton Dallas Hotel offers the Pride cocktail that will be served at The Parlor, the hotel’s upscale lounge bar, for all of Pride Month in June. The colorful cocktail combines an ounce and a half of Empress Gin, a half ounce of Campari and 2 ounces of fresh pineapple juice, topped with a hibiscus foam.
And at The Katharine Brasserie & Bar in Winston-Salem, NC, lead bartender Justin Rankin created the Marche des Fiertes. Named for the Paris Gay Pride Parade, the gin-based drink used liqueur and fruit garnishes to bring in all the colors of the rainbow. Here’s the full recipe.
Marche des Fiertes
- 1 oz. Cucumber-infused Hendrick’s Gin
- 1 oz. Rosemary simple syrup
- 1 oz. Lime juice
- Empress gin float
- Blue Curaçao sink
- Soda water
- Shake the gin, lime juice and rosemary simple.
- Strain over ice.
- Fill glass with soda water leaving room for your float and spirit sink.
- Take a bar spoon and sink the Blue Curaçao to the bottom.
- Float the Empress gin on top.
- Add your garnish of cherry, orange and lemon, giving you all the colors of the rainbow.