Booze You Can Use

Philly Celebrates the Cullen-Harrison Act With … Cocktails?

Perhaps beer is more appropriate for today's holiday.
Perhaps beer is more appropriate for today’s holiday. Photo: Franklin Mortgage and Investment Co.

We can totally appreciate a boozy holiday just as much as the next tippling fool. And we totally get why the Institute, Varga Bar, Iron Hill and other beer-centric watering holes are celebrating the 78th anniversary of the Cullen-Harrison Act today. It’s the bill Franklin D. Roosevelt signed into law in 1933 that pried back Prohibition just enough to allow the sale and consumption of beer that was no more than 3.2 percent alcohol by weight. But it wasn’t Repeal proper. That didn’t happen until Repeal Day, which is December 5. Here’s the thing we don’t get: Why is today being treated as the anniversary of Repeal?

TuB Gin, which appears to be all over this crossed-signal celebration, is pushing its product at Prohibition-era prices (25¢) at South Philly Tap Room, P.Y.T., and the Franklin. And Philadelphia Distilling is hawking its gin at Farmers’ Cabinet to honor Repeal. We don’t want to tell anyone how to honor a major milestone in America’s drinking history, but honestly it all feels a little awkward, like showing up to an Easter egg hunt in a Halloween costume.

Philly Celebrates the Cullen-Harrison Act With … Cocktails?