National Harvey Wallbanger Day Date in the current year: November 8, 2024

National Harvey Wallbanger Day National Harvey Wallbanger Day celebrates a once very popular cocktail that is essentially a screwdriver with a twist. It is observed annually on November 8.

The Harvey Wallbanger is a cocktail that consists of vodka, orange juice, and Galliano, a sweet Italian liqueur with vanilla-anise flavor and subtle herbal and citrus undertones. It is unclear when exactly this mixed drink was invented, but it didn’t become widely popular until the early 1970s, when it was heavily promoted to boost sales of Galliano in the United States.

In 1969, McKesson Imports Company, importer of Galliano to the United States, launched a marketing campaign to drive sales of the liqueur. The company’s marketing/sales director, George Bednar, commissioned a cartoon character named Harvey Wallbanger from graphic artist Bill Young. The character was a surfer who appeared in ads accompanied by the tagline “Harvey Wallbanger is the name. And I can be made!”

The person credited with inventing the Harvey Wallbanger cocktail is Donato “Duke” Antone, a three-time world champion mixologist, cocktail consultant, and the once head of Bartending School of Mixology. It is unclear whether Antone was commissioned by Bednar to design the drink or just created it on his own and then let his cocktail be used to market Galliano.

There is a story claiming that Antone invented the drink back in 1952 and named it after a surfer who frequented his bar, Tom Harvey, but there is no evidence to substantiate this highly implausible claim. Antone’s grandson has suggested that the earlier version of the cocktail was named the Duke’s Screwdriver, thus the name Harvey Wallbanger resulted from collaboration between Antone and Bednar.

Be that as it may, Bednar got his recipe and his character, and the marketing campaign was a success. Thanks to the new cocktail and the character promoting it, sales of Galliano quadrupled. The Harley Wallbanger remained very popular in the United States throughout the 1970s. Its popularity may have diminished over the past decades, but the cocktail remains a great options for those who don’t like their mixed drinks overcomplicated but want to have something more interesting than a simple screwdriver.

The Harvey Wallbanger consists of six parts fresh orange juice, three parts vodka, and one part Galliano. First, a highball glass is filled with ice. The vodka and juice are poured into the glass and stirred with ice. The Galliano is then poured on top. The finished cocktail may be garnished with an orange wedge and a maraschino cherry. A version of the cocktail known as the Freddy Fudpucker is made with tequila instead of vodka.

The origins of National Harvey Wallbager Day are unclear, but don’t let it stop you from enjoying this refreshing cocktail on November 8. You can celebrate by going out to a local bar or making a Harvey Wallbanger at home. And don’t forget to snap a photo of your cocktail before drinking and share it on social media with the hashtags #NationalHarveyWallbangerDay and #HarveyWallbangerDay to spread the world about this amazing holiday.

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National Harvey Wallbanger Day, unofficial holidays, observances in the United States, food and drink hays, mixed drinks, cocktails