So remember how a couple weeks ago I let you know about the hidden foodie boulevard piece I did for Vogue Magazine? The week before that, I wrote this piece for Vice, who has a food & drink specific channel called “Munchies” about Florence’s first speakeasy: Rasputin. (Article link: Inside Florence’s First Speakeasy for Vice Munchies)
Some might argue that Rasputin isn’t Florence’s first speakeasy since there are secret clubs and bars that are speakeasy in nature, like Mayday Club and a bar actually called “Speakeasy.” What I meant was that this is the first bar in Florence which adheres to the speakeasy genre of bar prevalent in the states during the prohibition era and which are now today still pretty trendy, especially in my previous hometown of Seattle. Not sure what the prohibition era was? In 1920-1933, there was a national ban on the production, sale and distribution of alcohol. And Americans don’t like being put in a sober corner so secret bars started popping up that were only known about by word-of-mouth, selling libations like the renegade badasses we yanks naturally are. People started homesteading hooch before it got cool and hipster the way it is today, hence the term “bathtub gin” and such. There were some fabulous drinks also born in that time like the gin sour, the sidecar, old-fashioned, mint-julep and more. The bars today who model themselves after these tragically hip booze-filled dwellings, attempt to recreate the atmosphere, exclusiveness and historic drinks with their termed speakeasy bars.
Go to any major metropolitan city in the world with just a drop of a craft drink scene, and you are bound to find one of these styled bars, where entrance is ambiguous and the key to get in lies in a word-of-mouth tip.
So up until now, Florence really didn’t have a speakeasy bar that fit this bill- unless it was so speakeasy that I haven’t heard about it or no one wants to talk about it.
I think Rasputin is freaking rad. And I am so lucky that they let me take up their time asking random questions and letting me bring in Beatrice Mancini do take some photos of a place where photography is not allowed.
In your secret punch trust,
Want to stay in touch for all things drinks, food and what I think is curiously cool? Stay in touch and follow along on my Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat feeds! Subscribe to this blog for future posts, too. Grazie!