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May 21, 2008

It's Southside time

Sad fact: I've lived in Baltimore City for three years and not once in all that time have I had a Southside.

Ever heard of a Southside?

It used to be a country club drink, made with an icy blend of rum, club soda, mint and magic -- depending on who was behind the bar.

These days, you can buy the mix at various places around town and add your own liquor at home.

But in all my time and travels in Baltimore, I've yet to slurp down a Southside.

That's gonna change tonight folks, thanks to my roommate Patchen ... 


Patchen got his paws on two bottles of George Lee's Original Southside Mix.

Lee is the grand-pappy of Southside makers. Dude must be close to 90 by this point, if he's not dead yet.

And, if truth be told, he makes the best Southside mix money can buy.

Sells it out of his house, too, I hear.

So tonight, we're gonna have a taste or two of Mr. Lee's legacy.

Thing is, I'm not entirely sure what to add to it, in terms of liquor. Amaretto? Rum? And how much?

Tell me! Tell me! Help!

I'll report back manana.

(Fuzzy cell phone photo sloppily snapped by me) 

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 3:20 PM | | Comments (15)
Categories: Random stuff


there are a bunch of recipes online for it, but none of them are matching up. lots of disputing evidence. good luck sessa, let us know the recipe you imbibe.

If I recall properly its equal parts southside mix, rum (or any clear liquor) and, I think, sprite (don't think its ginger ale), shaken, with a spring of mint.

If I recall properly its equal parts southside mix, rum (or any clear liquor) and, I think, sprite (don't think its ginger ale), shaken, with a sprig of mint.

I take that back - the above recipe is for mojitos, southsides are gin, southside mix, fresh lime juice and club soda.

I was going to mention this in my comment about Black Eyed Susan's last week, but it turns out Southsides aren't a b-more original, but rather was popularized up in Long Island.
Traditionally, I've put rum in them, but any light alcohol witll do (gin/vodka)

OK - I have been drinking Southside's for years (and George's mix is good stuff). The exact proportions are always going to be based on one's taste, but basically: Take a large glass or mug, fill it pretty full with ice. My preference is about 40% rum (DARK, not spiced - Mount Gay, Myers, etc.). 25% mix, and 35% club soda. Stir/shake well and enjoy.

Southsides are awesome. Somebody made them at a wedding reception for me: 3/4 Mount Gay Rum, 1/8 South Side Mix, 1/8 Sprite or Tonic...

I have always had them with gin. And mint, too...

I'm slightly confused. What's in the MIX? How much? I'd be skeptical of buying a 2 liter bottle of that from Herbert the Pervert.

How'd this work out for you?

JTK, gimme an hour and i'll post about it.

Jack - the "mix" is muddled mint leaves and confectioners sugar in lime juice

AMARETTO??? Sam, are you insane?

KitKat - thanks, I couldn't understand that you guys are making weird drink variations, sort of a 7&7, but not, sort of a mojito, but not, then I realized it's the mix. WHAT'S IN THE MIX! Now I know and can go to bed.

George has been delivering his magic elixir personally over many years to some of our family and friends and has told me personally he likes lots of ice, 1/3 dark rum [Myers], 1/3 mix and 1/3 soda water. Dress it up with a sprig of fresh mint... He would just laugh if someone suggested sprite or ginger ale as that would indeed be an abomination!

Part of the joy of a good Southside is how refreshing they are, so , sure you could powerhouse it with 40% run, but don't -drink an extra drink instead...

If you ever meet him get him to tell the story of how he concocted it in the forties at the Green Spring club and how closely guarded a secret his recipe is. He is quite an affable old guy with a great sense of humor and clearly has seen a lot of living in his time on the planet. You would be astounded to know how many of those little green bottles he goes through in a season!!!

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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