Emma Goldman was the name of the Jewish-American feminist and political activist and writer jailed in New York City in 1983 for inciting a riot among unemployed laborers with an impassioned speech.
It’s also the name of a new malt Scotch whisky drink, served through Mother’s Day at the NoMo SoHo Hotel in Manhattan alongside a handful of cocktails inspired by, and named after, pioneering women leaders from the annals of history.
On the menu at both the NoMo Kitchen restaurant and the hotel’s pop-up Tiki Room Lounge, all six incorporate spirits produced by female blenders and distillers (or, at least, the companies they helm).
Head bartender Megan Lazar says she created her cocktail series to salute Goldman, Queen Elizabeth II, Frida Kahlo and other “exceptionally inspiring women” with tipples crafted by ladies “who are equally trailblazing in the drinks world.”
Buy yourself and Mom a couple of Lazar’s creations ($17 each) next Sunday, and maybe, once you’re both a little tipsy, you’ll find it easier to tell her something super sentimental (like how inspiring she is to you, too).
Before you head to 9 Crosby St., brush up on the drinks’ back stories below:
The inspiration: Critics condemned Emma Goldman as an advocate of politically motivated violence, but admirers considered her a freethinking “rebel woman.”
The spirits: Two BenRiach Single Malt Scotch Whiskies crafted by Rachel Barrie, one of only a handful of female master blenders in Scotland
The cocktail: Maraschino liqueur and two dashes of chocolate bitters may make you think you are sipping a chocolate-covered cherry with a boozy kick.
The inspiration: She’s better known as Queen Elizabeth II, the beloved monarch of the U.K. and the head of the Royal family. Since ascending to the throne in 1952, Elizabeth Windsor rarely ever talked about herself in public, but we do know she loves corgis.
The spirit: Hendrick’s Gin, created by master distiller Lesley Gracie
The cocktail:The Elizabeth Windsor tastes of strawberry, rhubarb and sherry. It’s served in a glass lined with a thin slice of cucumber and sprayed with rose water.
The inspiration: Played by Taraji P. Henson in the recent biopic “Hidden Figures,” Katherine Johnson was an African-American mathematician whose advanced calculations by hand helped turn the tide toward the United States in the space race with the U.S.S.R.
The spirit: Macchu Pisco, crafted by master distiller Melanie Asher, who founded her company right after graduating Harvard Business School and now works with her sister Lizzie
The cocktail: Chartreuse, a French liqueur, and yuzu juice lend a green-yellow hue to this drink, which is poured over a large ice cube with a sprig of tarragon frozen inside.
The inspiration: An iconoclastic Mexican painter, Frida Kahlo made her biggest impressions with self-portraits depicting her deepest fears and insecurities. She traveled in revolutionary circles and her unibrowed image remains an icon of the feminist movement.
The spirit: Herradura tequila, crafted by Maria Theresa Lara, who calls herself Mexico’s only female tequila master distiller
The cocktail: An infusion of chipotle peppers gives this tequila and mezcal drink a kick, but strawberry syrup and pineapple lend some complementary sweetness.
The inspiration: Some call the African-American singer, arranger, songwriter, pianist and Civil Rights Movement activist the “High Priestess of Soul,” but Nina Simone explored all kinds of genres in her music, from jazz to classical. Her most famous song, “Mississippi Goddam,” became a standard in the 1960s protest repertoire.
The spirit: Laird’s Applejack apple brandy, produced by a more than 300-year-old family-owned American distillery run by Lisa Laird Dunn
The cocktail: Tastes of the bittersweet Italian liqueur Rosolio di Bergamotto mix with the apply brandy, blueberry lavender cordial and lime juice.
The inspiration: A British primatologist and anthropologist, Jane Goodall is considered the world’s foremost expert on chimpanzees after studying the primates for decades in the Gombe Stream National Park in Tanzania.
The spirit: Appleton Rum, crafted in Jamaica by the world’s first female rum master blender, Joy Spence
The cocktail: A whipped egg gives this banana syrup-infused drink its foamy texture. It’s served in a fresh, chimp-approved coconut, over ice.