In honor of the 90th year of the repeal of prohibition, Claudio’s Tavern and Grill in Greenport will host a Prohibition Party on Friday, October 20, starting at 7 PM. Dress in your best prohibition era costume and enjoy live music from the Hoo Doo Loungers and cocktail tastings courtesy of Jefferson Whiskey at one of the most notable speakeasies.
Enjoy prohibition inspired cocktails such as the 1933, a refreshing and delightful variation of an Old Fashion. The Hidden Trap, named for the hidden trap door at Claudio’s used to smuggle the booze in, a spin on a classic cocktail – The Little Italy, which is a spin on The Manhattan. The Mitchell’s Carousel is inspired by Greenport’s famous carousel, a playful cocktail featuring the two main liquors bootlegged into Claudio’s during Prohibition – whiskey and rum.
Tours of the historic property including the trap door, dumbwaiter, and other Prohibition era elements on site will be given from 7 to 8 PM and those attending the tour receive a complimentary cocktail. A small bites menu will be available during the party.
Founded in 1870 Claudio’s in Greenport has spanned several decades as well as many historical events. In the height of Prohibition, Claudio’s was among one of the most notable speakeasies. The iconic eatery may have been a fine dining restaurant downstairs however upstairs was a different story. Upstairs locals who were granted entry imbibed in illegal spirits smuggled in by bootleggers. The building sat on stilts over the water which allowed for easy access for bootleggers to pull their boats (aka rummies) up under the building and pass their booze up through the trap door in the floor behind the bar. That trap door still exists today. The booze was then shipped off to Manhattan however some of it stayed for locals. The illegal booze was transported by dumbwaiter from the restaurant up to the speakeasy. Notable guests in the 1920s included mobster Bugsy Siegel, Legs Diamond, and Dutch Schultz.