Not to be confused with a Screwdriver, the Greyhound is one of the great classics that was almost lost to the sands of time. I couldn’t even find it in my Mixology textbook! I’m assuming this is because grapefruit has become such an acquired taste and the American palate is so brainwashed by corn syrup that anything that doesn’t taste like mountain dew or redbull gets written off. Occasionally you see them popping up at hipster bars looking to offer something more artisanal.
I’m not sure how this cocktail was named, some say because of how quick it is to create. I have a feeling it might have been a popular drink near the racetracks, which is an incredibly depressing thought. Though (not to date myself) Colorado just became the 39th state to ban Greyhound racing!
The first publication of the drink was pre-prohibition and without ice, as were many drinks before every American had their own icebox. The drink started off by mixing grapefruit jelly with lemon juice and sugar, then stirring in gin. Later that became vodka and grapefruit juice to simplify it. Add salt to the rim and leave off the garnish and you’ve got yourself a Salty Dog. I love cocktail names. Vodka or gin, salt or not—I think this is one drink that needs to make a comeback.
Retro Greyhound Cocktail (serves 1)
1 shot vodka or gin
3 shots grapefruit juice
Fresh grapefruit or lime to garnish
heavy turbinado sugar to taste
Pour liquor and grapefruit juice over ice in an english hi-ball glass. Sprinkle in a little bit of the sugar if using. Stir gently and garnish with a slice of grapefruit or wedge of lime.