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Clover Club Cocktail

This Clover Club cocktail is simultaneously sweet and tart. Learn how to make this frothy pre-prohibition cocktail at home in just five minutes.

Crafted Clover Club Cocktail
Image: ©2foodtrippers

Our quest to travel the world through cocktails has taken us home. Well, not literally. Hear us out…

As it turns out, the Clover Club cocktail was originally created just one mile from where we lived in Philadelphia for a decade. While we didn’t actually drink Clover Clubs when we lived in Philadelphia, the pre-prohibition cocktail still reminds us of home.

Discover our favorite Pre-Prohibition cocktails.

Clover Club Cocktail History

Clover Club Cocktail from Above
The Clover Club cocktail gets its name from Philadelphia’s now defunct male-only Clover Club. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

The origin story of many cocktails is fuzzy. The Clover Club is not one of those cocktails. Instead, this is a classic cocktail with a definitive birth at Philadelphia’s Clover Club.

Formed in 1882, the Clover Club met on Philadelphia’s Broad Street in the historic Bellevue-Stratford building that currently functions as a luxury Hyatt Hotel with offices. Beyond drinking cocktails, members of this club lived by the following motto: Who enters here leaves care behind, leaves sorrow behind, leaves petty envies and jealousies behind.

Clover Club Cocktail on Ledge at Night
We leave sorrow behind every time we sip a Clover Club cocktail. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Despite its altruistic ambitions, The Clover Club didn’t survive prohibition or the 19th amendment. However, the red drink named after the now defunct club lives on in bars and lounges around the world.

Fun Fact
Prior to prohibition and women’s suffrage, joining male-only clubs like the Clover Club was the norm for lawyers, journalists, bankers and other gentrified white men of privilege. Apparently those captains of industry liked to drink and weren’t concerned about the color of their cocktails.


Clover Club Mise en Place
The only required ingredients for a Clover Club cocktail are gin, grenadine, fresh lemon juice, an egg white and ice. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

The Clover Cub hits our sweet spot as a cocktail with just five ingredients including ice. These are the only ingredients required for the Clover Club recipe:

  • Gin
  • Grenadine Syrup
  • Egg White
  • Fresh Lemon Juice
  • Ice Cubes (for shaking)

You don’t need any fancy equipment to craft a Clover Club cocktail. All you need is a jigger, shaker and knife.

Grenadine and Gin for Clover Club Cocktail Recipe
You probably already have grenadine and gin at home. These are the bottles that we pulled from our pantry. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Some recipes replace grenadine syrup with raspberry syrup. We choose to use grenadine for two reasons – it’s true to the original Philadelphia recipe and it’s an ingredient that we typically have at home.

Discover our favorite grenadine cocktails.

In terms of gin, we typically use original Bombay dry London gin in this recipe. It reminds of our visit to the Bombay Sapphire distillery in England, plus we can easily find Bombay gin at local Lisbon liquor stores. However, you can use your favorite gin instead.

Go the extra mile and use Bluecoat gin to craft your Clover Club cocktail. Not only is it America’s original dry gin, but it’s also distilled in Philadelphia.

Discover our favorite gin cocktails.

How To Craft A Clover Club Cocktail

Clover Club Ingredients
You don’t need a lot of ingredients or tools to craft a Clover Club cocktail at home. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Crafting a Clover Club cocktail is both easy and fast. Beyond squeezing fresh lemon juice and separating an egg white, these are the only required steps:

  • Dry shake the ingredients without ice in a cocktail shaker.
  • Shake a second time with ice.
  • Strain into a coupe glass.
Egg Yolk in Shell
Separating out the egg white is the most complicated aspect of crafting a Clover Club cocktail. However, home cooks won’t find this to be a challenge. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We’d be remiss if we didn’t address the elephant in the room, i.e. the inclusion of a raw egg white. To avoid any stomach discomfort, you’ll want to use the freshest available eggs for this recipe. You can use pasteurized egg white in lieu of fresh egg white if you’re squeamish.

The egg white is an important ingredient not for flavor but rather for achieving froth during the dry shake. But what is a dry shake?

Dry Shake Explanation
The phrase dry shake refers to shaking a cocktail without ice. Typical in cocktail recipes with egg whites, dry shaking causes the eggs to emulsify into a frothy foam.

Clover Club inside Shaker
We developed this froth after dry shaking the ingredients in a cocktail shaker. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

You’re now ready to make your own Clover Club at home! Sure, you could order this classic cocktail at a bar in a city like Philadelphia or New York, but making one at home is highly satisfying not to mention cost effective.


Pouring Grenadine for Clover Club Cocktail
Grenadine syrup gives the Clover Club cocktail its fun pink hue. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

The Clover Club is a sour cocktail in the same family as the Bee’s Knees and Tom Collins. We recommend you follow our classic Clover Club recipe before you try one or more of the following variations:

  • Use raspberry syrup instead of grenadine.
  • Go one step further and use homemade syrup made with fresh raspberries.
  • Add muddled raspberries.
  • Add vermouth to balance the flavor.
  • Leave out the lemon juice and craft a Pink Lady cocktail.

Discover 10 essential bar tools for the home mixologist.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where was the Clover Club cocktail invented?

The Clover Club was invented in Philadelphia.

What are the ingredients in a Clover Club?

Gin, Grenadine Syrup, Egg White, Fresh Lemon Juice and Ice

What’s the best gin to use in a Clover Club?

Your favorite gin is the best gin for this cocktail recipe.

Is it mandatory to add egg white?

No. You can replace the egg white with pasteurized egg white or aquafaba if you’re concerned about ingesting raw eggs.

Is the Clover Club shaken or stirred?

The Clover Club is shaken, not stirred.

What type of glass is best for the Clover Club?

We like to serve this cocktail in a coupe glass but you could use a small martini glass instead.

Did you craft this cocktail? If so, please rate the recipe below.

Clover Club Cocktail on Ledge
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4.67 from 3 votes

Clover Club Recipe

This frothy pre-prohibition cocktail is simultaneously sweet and tart. Learn how to make one at home in just five minutes.
Prep Time5 minutes
Total Time5 minutes
Course: Drink
Cuisine: Cocktail
Servings: 1
Calories: 189kcal


  • 2 ounces gin
  • 1/2 ounce grenadine
  • 3/4 ounce lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
  • 1 egg white
  • lemon peel (garnish)
  • ice cubes (for shaking)


  • Combine gin, grenadine (or raspberry syrup), lemon juice and egg white in a shaker. Do not add ice.
  • Shake vigorously until ingredients are mixed and egg white emulsifies – approximately 20 seconds.
  • Add several ice cubes and shake again until the liquid is chilled – approximately 20 seconds.
  • Strain into a coupe glass.
  • Add lemon twist as garnish.

Pro Tips

  • Slice the lemon twist from the lemon peel before you squeeze out the lemon juice.
  • You can use fresh raspberries as garnish instead of or in addition to the lemon twist
  • We like to use a coupe glass but a small martini glass will work too.

Estimated Nutrition

Calories: 189kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 0.1g | Saturated Fat: 0.01g | Sodium: 54mg | Potassium: 76mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 1IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 0.1mg
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About the Authors

Daryl and Mindi Hirsch

Saveur Magazine’s BEST TRAVEL BLOG award winners Daryl and Mindi Hirsch share their culinary travel experiences and recipes on the 2foodtrippers website. Since launching the site in 2012, they’ve traveled to over 40 countries in their quest to bring readers a unique taste of the world.


Article Updates
We update our articles regularly. Some updates are major while others are minor link changes and spelling corrections. Let us know if you see anything that needs to be updated in this article.

We purchased the ingredients and tools used to craft this cocktail.

Original Publication Date: July 30, 2020

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