John Lennon Discovered His Favorite Cocktail During The Infamous 'Lost Weekend'

The breakup of The Beatles dragged on for several years across multiple albums in a painfully tense backstory that makes other band breakups look like the Fourth of July. It all culminated in December of 1974 when the legal stamp of approval on the band's breakup was handed down. Cascading from the tallest mountain of fame ever witnessed, Lennon's relationship with Yoko Ono had been on the rocks for some time. There was a vocal and unignorable impression that Yoko had ruined the band. Perhaps rightly so, though she was far from the only factor at play. With so much pressure building up around their partnership, they broke up in the summer of 1973, marking the start of John Lennon's 18-month-long Lost Weekend.

The Lost Weekend was pretty rock and roll, all things considered. Lennon ran off with his young assistant May Pang, fell back into his old drug habits, and generally caused a commotion wherever he went. One such occasion that hasn't been lost to the fog of war was March 12, 1974, during the Smothers Brothers concert at The Troubadour nightclub in Hollywood. Lennon was there with another legendary musician, Harry Nilsson, who introduced him to the Brandy Alexander, which would eventually become Lennon's favorite cocktail. Made with brandy or cognac, creme de cacao, and cream, Lennon would often refer to them as milkshakes, which, funnily enough, is exactly how Tasting Table describes them.

Lost Weekend, found cocktail

Lennon didn't realize how strong these milkshakes were and was soon blitzed out of his brilliant British mind. Harry Nilsson, ever the trickster, apparently began to provoke Lennon into making a scene by saying that the Smothers Brothers liked hecklers. Lennon took the invitation with full force by shouting out obscenities, eventually getting the duo kicked out after a violent scuffle, requiring a full public apology from him to make amends, though the story may have been exaggerated over the years.

During an interview with Bob Harris on the television show "The Old Grey Whistle Test," Lennon described what happened that night. "I got drunk and shouted," Lennon said. "It was the first night I had drank Brandy Alexanders, which is brandy and milk, folks." The Smothers Brothers band was kind enough to forgive him, but the headache wasn't bad enough to put Lennon off the drink for good.

On the contrary, he became renowned for his love of Brandy Alexanders even after the Lost Weekend was finally over. Lennon got back with Yoko, and they had their first child shortly after. He even started playing music with Paul McCartney again even though the band had only recently collapsed. Was the Brandy Alexander the delicious glue that the band needed to stay together? Absolutely not, but a good tipple can make a bad year and six months seem not so bad after all. It's a shame Lennon probably never had a chance to try the cocktail frozen.