Who Wants an Orange Whip?
As the story goes, there was once a beverage manufacturing company by the name of Orange Whip Corp. that made a syrupy, whipped fountain drink, the likes of which you may’ve found in gas stations in the 60’s and 70’s. Details regarding the company are hard to come by, but it appears as though production had come to a halt by the early 1980’s.
According to a Chicago Sun-Times article published in 2005, the father of a set designer for 1980’s The Blues Brothers worked for the illustrious Orange Whip Company and, at some point, it was proposed to director John Landis that he do a certain someone a favor and include Orange Whip in the film for product placement. Though it’s rather ludicrous to think that Mr. Landis took this suggestion seriously, it must’ve tickled a young cast member’s (John Candy) funnybone. In a late scene, three on-duty police officers (one of whom is Candy) sit in a bar lounge awaiting the conclusion of Jake and Elwood Blue’s final concert performance, when Candy, with impeccable comic timing, improvises the now-ubiquitous drink order. Watch it here:
Though it could be coincidental, it’s safe to say that prior to the release of The Blues Brothers in 1980, the Orange Whip was nothing more than the product of a fledgling American soft drink company. Such trivialities, however, do little to deter a bartender from spiking whatever liquid is within arms-reach. So what started as a tongue-in-cheek quip was treated as a summons and, as a result, the Orange Whip cocktail was born.
The approximate birth date of the first alcoholic Orange Whip is unknown. Perhaps a record was never made because of its questionable conception but, then again, many drinks of this ilk (the Orgasm, Slippery Nipple and Sex on the Beach to name a few) are surrounded by soft recollections. They do, however, share some stylistic similarities (the use of schnapps, modern liqueurs and affordably packaged fruit juices like cranberry, pineapple and orange) that plant them somewhere in the last quarter of the 20th century. The most common alcoholic interpretation of the Orange Whip didn’t put anybody out too much either, but neither did it impress. As it stands today, the traditional Orange Whip is a murky concoction of vodka, rum, orange juice and cream that will make even the most populist of mixologists furrow their brow.
But maybe a misunderstood line in a movie is the perfect context for the rebirth of a drink. We’ve studied texts as far back as the late nineteenth century that detail how to deliver stunning and praiseworthy drinks. But excellent potations certainly aren’t limited to any era and liberties are often taken behind the bar to adapt forgotten drinks to the modern palate. Cocktails are subject to constant change and development. Perhaps it’s through irreverence that a drink like the Orange Whip is given credence. It may’ve been a ham-handed idea to begin with, but its base ingredients (rum, orange juice, cream) brush up stylistically with many a classic drink. With a little imagination, a highly favorable drink can be achieved. This time we’ll write down where it all started.
The Orange Whip 1.5 - flor de cana rum 3 - freshly-squeezed orange juice 1 - cream .75 - luxardo triple sec .25 - simple syrup .25 - lemon juice 1 dropper - vanilla extract
shake with cobbled ice and pour unstrained into a collins glass. garnish with an orange twist.
image of Orange Whip fountain container:
— Joe Darling