The Man in the Green Hat

George Cassiday was a WWI veteran who came home with an injury that prevented him from returning to his job at the railroad. So, what’s an underemployed fella going to do to earn money in the 1920’s? Bootleg, of course!


Image courtesy Thank you!

Ol’ George began smuggling hooch by train from New York to Washington, D.C., 2 large suitcases full at a time, to supply all of Congress with their illegal libations. Yep! You read that right. Members of the House and Senate alike, including those who voted dry, kept George in business whenever Congress was in session. They even set up a basement office as a supply room for his operation.


Image courtesy Thank you!

After a couple years the Capitol Police finally caught on and arrested George for possession of illegal alcohol. The arresting officer’s description of George to the media included his light green felt hat, and the infamous moniker, “The Man in the Green Hat”, was born. George was banned from the House premises, but that didn’t stop him. If anything his new found fame increased business, and he simply moved his bootlegging business to the other side of the capitol building.

Now that you’ve had your history lesson, let’s jump straight to the hooch. Here’s what you need to make The Man in the Green Hat:


1 1/2 oz gin

1 1/2 oz Cré

2 dashes mint bitters

lemon twist

This drink is going to be served “up”, meaning it will be served cold without ice, so the glassware must be properly chilled. Simply fill a cocktail glass with ice water and let it sit while you mix the drink.


In a separate mixing glass pour 1 1/2 oz gin. We prefer a nice London Dry gin for this particular cocktail, but any gin will work just fine.


Add 1 1/2 oz Cré.


Finish with 2 dashes mint bitters. Don’t use too much! A little bitters goes a long way.


Add ice.


Do not listen to James Bond. Always stir your martinis! Shaking them adds air and chips of ice making the drink cloudy or “bruised”. Stirring with ice chills the drink while maintaining the clarity of the liquid.


Once the mixture is ice cold, discard the ice water that is chilling your glassware and immediately strain the drink into the glass.


Twist a little lemon peel over the surface of the drink. This brightens the flavor and gives a wonderful aroma.


Set your twist on the rim for a fun garnish, and serve immediately while it’s nice and cold.


In honor of our hooch hero, George Cassiday, we give you The Man in the Green Hat.


Thanks for keeping the spirits flowing, George!