Charleston Pink Lady Cocktail Recipe

I’d like to thank all of you who are checking in again to view this post as it was meant to be seen last Sunday.  Next week,  I’ll be back with more tales from Down Under.

I have had a love affair with Charleston, South Carolina all of my adult life . I was swept off my feet in an instant while walking beside the elegant, architectural matrons on the Battery, peering like a voyeur into the walled, moss covered gardens filled with languid camellias and trickling fountains. Oh, and let’s not forget the food! I was a novice to sweet oysters and rich she crab soup till then, which became the prelude to many culinary adventures. I fell hard for Charleston, and the romance continues to this day. Many years later I share my love with someone who just might love Charleston even more than I do, my daughter Dana.

She was a little girl on her first visit and we thought that she would enjoy a carriage ride. Now, not every carriage gets to go to the “must see” areas. At that time, your tour locale was picked by chance. That morning, the driver turned to the cute, dark haired girl at the front of the carriage and asked her to pick a name out of his hat and as luck would have it, Dana picked the desirable Battery and College of Charleston tour. We drove through Charleston’s lush beauty and listened to its history. Little did we know at the time, our personal history would be entwined with this special city forever.

A few years passed and our next visit was when Dana was looking at colleges. Within the first 10 minutes, Dana announced that the College of Charleston was where she wanted to go. We went on to visit the “backups”, but we all knew that she had fallen under the spell of Charleston and her best Christmas gift that year was her acceptance letter.

If you’re not familiar with the College of Charleston, then you wouldn’t know that graduation is on Mother’s Day weekend. The year of Dana’s graduation there was a new President at the College and he announced that something that had never happened in the 200 plus year history of the school was about to take place. We were wondering what that might be, when staid, classical music began the procession of new graduates from the stage… all of a sudden it was replaced with the Beatles “Roll over Beethoven”…and then, very appropriately they were playing “Charleston.” The whole mood lighten and it was befitting when some students began dancing off the stage. The “Charleston” (song and dance) will always be associated with this lively city and of course, the Jazz Age.

So, in honor of the many special Mother’s Days I’ve spent in Charleston, for this week’s Sunday Supper I’d like to raise a glass to mothers everywhere, a glass filled with a cocktail that might have been served during the Gatsby Era…the Pink Lady. There has been a resurgence in classic cocktails lately, this one looks so demure, but don’t be fooled, back in the Roaring Twenties the main ingredient was bathtub gin!

Charleston Pink Lady Cocktail Recipe

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Cook Time: 1 minute

Total Time: 4 minutes

Yield: 2 Servings


  • 3 Jiggers Gin (I recommend using Hendrick's Gin)
  • 1 1/2 Jiggers Heavy Cream
  • 1 Jigger Applejack
  • 1 Teaspoon Grenadine (I recommend using Jack Rudy Cocktail's Grenadine)
  • Handful of ice


  1. Pour ingredients into cocktail shaker or jar with lid. Shake vigorously. Strain into cocktail glasses. Serve.





14 Responses to “Charleston Pink Lady Cocktail Recipe”

  1. 1

    Supal {chevrons and éclairs} — Tuesday, December 24, 2013 @ 10:03 am

    Hi Susie! This is a beautiful recipe! I just thought I would let you know that I will be sharing this recipe + link to your blog on my blog’s Facebook page on 25 January – 3pm EST. Thanks a lot! x

    • Susie replied: — January 4th, 2014 @ 10:39 am

      Thank you for sharing!

  2. 2

    cate tuten — Tuesday, December 31, 2013 @ 10:49 pm

    Susie! I am from Charleston. I love to hear about others love affair with her!!! My daughter also graduated from The College of Charleston…..thanks so much for sharing the Pink Lady cocktail. How so very appropriate to link a pink cocktail with this beautiful city!! Thanks!! Cate Tuten

    • Susie replied: — January 4th, 2014 @ 10:38 am

      Thank you so much for your lovely comment!

  3. 3

    Kelly — Friday, January 10, 2014 @ 7:49 pm

    this is a Pink Shimmy! LOVE Ladies and Shimmies! Thanks!

  4. 4

    Aurelia — Thursday, February 27, 2014 @ 12:39 pm

    This looks fantastic, and the recipe sounds delicious! I love cocktails, I’ll definitely be making this :)

  5. 5

    Kate — Monday, March 31, 2014 @ 2:22 pm

    Is Applejack a brandy? And if so is there a certain brand you use?

  6. 6

    Therese ( — Monday, April 28, 2014 @ 9:37 am

    I’ve been to Charleston at least a handful of times over the years and I am always amazed at how much there is to do there. From history to food to it’s beauty, I truly understand your love affair with Charleston. Thanks for sharing such a pretty cocktail!

  7. 7

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  9. 9

    Tara — Wednesday, March 18, 2015 @ 3:26 pm

    Hi Susie,

    What a beautiful drink….I’m going to try it this weekend!

    I am in the process of planning my wedding and gathering inspiration for it on my blog. This drink looks like a must have for us so I mentioned it and linked back to your site/recipe.

    Thank you! :-)

    Beautiful Dreamer

  10. 10

    Sue Pecora — Saturday, March 28, 2015 @ 6:55 am

    I have always loved Charleston and the graciousness of the people there as well as the architecture! Someday, I plan to move to Charleston! I’m going to try this drink, and I can tell from the ingredients and the way it looks that I will love it. Thanks for sharing!

  11. 11

    Jane — Monday, March 30, 2015 @ 6:41 pm

    I was searching the web for a cocktail to serve this weekend for our Easter dinner when I came across this perfect sounding drink. We live in Charleston, SC and it will be a lovely 70 degrees this weekend, so this drink sounds perfect for the weather and the arrival of Spring! My husband and I will of course have to have a trial run one night this week :-)

  12. 12

    Louise Hanson — Friday, April 3, 2015 @ 12:59 pm

    This sounds delicious, but I am deathly allergic to gin! Is there something that could be substituted for the gin?

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