Cocktails & Spirits

Prohibition Repeal Day is December 5: Where to Celebrate in South Florida

In case you fell asleep during history class, Repeal Day is the repeal, or the abolition, of the 18th amendment. You see, on January 16, 1919, Congress passed this amendment, which made alcohol illegal. For 14 thirsty years, Prohibition was the law of the land; intended to reduce crime, mental illness, drunkenness, poverty, and other social ills for which alcohol was blamed. Ironically, bootlegging gave rise to organized crime, so oops on that one.

Finally, a sober nation came to its senses and on December 5, 1933, the amendment was repealed, allowing all to enjoy their cocktails, wine, and beer as they damn well pleased.

To celebrate the end to that dark, dry time,  bars throughout Broward, Palm Beach, and Dade counties will be partying like it’s 1933 with Repeal Day events. Here are a few worth checking out:

Grand Opening of Old Arcade
Though it opened quiety in October, Delray’s very own actual speakeasy the Old Arcade (411 E. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach) has appropriately choses Repeal Day to celebrate its official grand openings. An homage to the Arcade Tap Room, the original bar famous for artists and author frequenters in the 1920s, the Old Arcade is a modern take on the classic speakeasy. Starting at 9 p.m., guests will enjoy live music and cocktails such as the Prospect Park, Pecant Be Serious and other beverages with humorous monikers. Guests must email [email protected] to RSVP to receive a password. No password, no admittance. Note that the entrance is inside Caffé Martier, typical speakeasy style. Dressing according to the prohibition theme is strongly encouraged, and the best-dressed couple will win free drinks. Call 561-450-6169, or visit their Facebook page.


You can’t mention “prohibition” and “speakeasy” without talking about Stache (109 SW 2nd Ave., Fort Lauderdale). Broward’s version of the speakeasy is throwing a full party in style featuring music from the 1920’s as well as style dubbed “electro swing”. In typical Stache fashion, there will also be live burlesque performances as well as an aerialist. The party starts at 8 p.m. and extends until midnight. Visit

Word has it that Delray’s Dada (52 N Swinton Ave., Delray Beach) was built during the prohibition years. So naturally, there will be a party celebrating the repeal of the 18th amendment. Speakeasy-inspired drink specials as well as music from Bad Apples Brass Band comprise this event. Those donned in 1920’s and 1930’s attire will receive a free drink. The fun starts at 10 p.m. Visit their Facebook page.
The Mighty
Travel to Miami for The Mighty’s (2224 Southwest 22nd St., Miami) repeal day. Starting at 8 p.m., guests can sip on free cocktails while jamming out to jazz music by Damian J & The TRAD305. Themed attire is also encouraged, as there is a costume contest. Admission is $33 presale and $50 at the door. Get the tickets while you can, due to limited availability. Partial proceeds benefit SuperHeroes for SuperKids®. Visit

Concrete Beach Brewery
Concrete Beach Brewery (325 NW 24th St., Miami) is joining in on the fun with a beer release. The lager is hopped with corn and is said to be reflective of the revolving drink taste after Prohibition. Themed dress is encouraged. This event starts at 5 p.m. Visit

Natalya Jones is a food and music writer covering Broward and Palm Beach counties. To get the latest in entertainment and fun things to do in South Florida, follow her on Twitter.

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Natalya Jones