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Chicago Drinks That Rock: The South Side

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(Photo by Sandra Mu/Getty Images)

By Mason Johnson

The South Side is a gin cocktail with lotsa lemon and sugar, making it perfect for the summer (though I wouldn't attempt to buy one at the lemonade stand on your block, kids are terrible at mixing drinks).

The South Side got popular during prohibition. The many mobsters of the time, O'Banion and his famous adversaries Torrio and Capone in particular, were desperate for cocktails that:

1. Tasted better than the competition.
2. Hid the horrible taste of the cheap swill they were peddling.

Hence, the birth of the South Side, a drink so sweet it hides the taste of the bathtub your gin was made in.

To be honest, that story about the South Side's creation is about as truthful as your high school ex who claimed, "it's not you, it's me." Ask someone from the East Coast, and it's possible they'll tell you the South Side originated in New York and found popularity in New Jersey.

But who cares about history? We're here to drink.

My instructions aren't "graceful" or "correct," but they'll do the job...

See the ingredients & instructions at

Mason Johnson, CBS Chicago

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