Pourhouse brings iconic cocktail Wanderers Punch back after 18 years

- It's been 18 years since the original Wanderers Punch graced a bar in downtown Minneapolis.

But, The Pourhouse in the Lumber Exchange building decided it was time for the iconic cocktail to make a comeback.

Wanderers Punch is a rum-based knockout that lived up to its name during its hey day at the Nankin Cafe in the late 70's and 80's.

It was originally served in a 33-ounce brandy snifter, but its newest version at the Pourhouse comes in a 14 ounce goblet that bar owners say does the original proud.

"It's 2017. Things have to change and evolve. [It's] just a smarter way to bring back the iconic drink without the craziness of what 33 ounces will do to you," Pourhouse owner Deepak Nath said.

"I remember my own personal experiences at the Nankin and with Wanderers Punch, and now that I'm in the industry, I wanted to bring back a signature cocktail that I had fond memories of and bring that to a new generation in Minneapolis.

The Nankin opened in 1919 and quickly become known as one of the nicest Chinese restaurants in the country.

It switched locations and owners twice before closing in what is now City Center in the late 90's.

At the height of its popularity, people would stop by the Nankin for its signature drink before "wandering" to other bars for a night on the town.

"Anyone who was out in downtown Minneapolis has a great story about what their experience was with Wanderers. We've already had people planning reunions with their old friends they haven't seen in a long time because they moved out the suburbs and haven't been downtown in a long time, Nath said.

While there have been plenty of knockoffs over the years, the Pourhouse says its version is the real deal and it hopes its Wanderers Punch stays put for the foreseeable future.

"Its a really famous drink in Minnesota, and a lot of people remember it. So when you drink it you remember a lot of things from when your mom or dad drank it. Its a good memory drink," said Edmond Wu, whose family was the last to own the Nankin.

"Memories and good times are all we care about," he said.

The Pourhouse just brought Wanderers back on Sunday, and so far, its gotten a pretty good reception.

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