Dawson City in Yukon, Canada is one of the strangest places to be in. It’s where people can find an odd yet popular drink, the Sourtoe Cocktail. That is, of course, you don’t find drinking a cocktail garnished with an actual mummified human toe in it a strange and repulsive thing!
The Sourtoe Cocktail was established in 1973 and has become a tradition in the town of Dawson, particularly in a bar called Sourdough Saloon in the Downtown Hotel. The bizarre drink’s history can be traced back sometime in the 1920’s when Yukon rum runner Louie Linken got his big toe frostbitten after running into a blizzard with Otto, his brother. Otto had to chop off the toe then preserved it in a jar of alcohol.
Fifty years later, the jar was found and the toe inside has become an important ingredient.
Captain Dick Stevenson, a Yukon local, found the jar containing the mummified toe while cleaning out a cabin and the rest, as they say, is history.
The toe can be used to garnish any drink…
But most people want the toe to be in their Yukon Jack liquor.
Drinkers of the toe will become a member of the Sourtoe Cocktail Club. Currently, the club has more than 100,000 members from different parts of the world, according to the official website. There are certain rules people should follow to become a member of the club.
Swallowing the toe is prohibited!
But a drinker should allow the toe to touch the lips.
Anyone who has completed the challenge will be awarded a certificate.
Swallowing the toe initially resulted in a $500 fine. However, this amount was increased when, in 2013, a man purposely swallowed the toe whole, paid the fine straight up and calmly walked out.
If you’re wondering where the toes are coming from, patrons donate them to the bar.
This is why the toes are very difficult to procure– they are precious to the Sourdough Saloon. Over the years, there have already been eight toes that had gone missing, the Guardian reported. It’s either they were stolen or were swallowed, intentionally or accidentally.