by Fernanda Mueller
No microphone or flags – Rory is not that kind of guide. In the drinking and prohibition history tour, you’ll feel like you’re walking around with a local friend.
The actress and producer started her company, called Telltale tours, four years ago, with the mission of making history fun. Her award-winning tour guides are storytellers from all over the world. “I don’t really care if you were born here, I don’t care how long you’ve been here. I care if you are passionate about the city and if you can express this in the tour”, says Rory.
Learn history while drinking at local bars
The Drinking and Prohibition History Tour is a dive into hidden and local bars in New York, focused on the Prohibition era. It explores a period in New York’s history from 1920 to 1933, during which all the production, importation, transportation, and sale of alcohol was banned in the United States.
The groups visit three historical bars, with great cocktails recommended by the guide, while listening to some stories from the time. Drinks are not included in the ticket price, but having a cocktail is definitely part of the experience, and you will not want to miss it.
The first location is in one of the two original speakeasies (the hidden bars that emerged during Prohibition). The Flûte Bar is an incredible, dark place specializing in champagne drinks. In this spot, everyone gets a sample drink. I recommend you to try the Green Kimono (vodka perfumed with cucumber and melon floated with Champagne).
The second location is not a speakeasy; it is a place that only locals go. The spot where Lilly’s bar is located used to be church! It was created to honor of Lillie Langtry, a British actress and socialite of the late 19th century, who challenged Victorian society’s attitudes to women.
The third and last location is called Dear Irving on Hudson, a very exclusive bar with a James Bond-inspired interior decor. Try the Balto Old-fashioned, a New York classic, or, if you don’t like highly alcoholic drinks, the Panora Daiquiri (it’s like a Piña Colada, but it doesn’t taste too sweet) while enjoying a beautiful view of Manhattan.
For bookings and more information about the tours, access Telltale Tours’ website.