Manhattan Special & Ginseng Up: Cures for the Common Hangover

by Melody Kettle

I've discovered two cures for the common hangover: Manhattan Special and Ginseng Up.  

The first, Manhattan Special, is geared for those with an unabashed sweet tooth and no apparent regard for carbohydrates.  The second, Ginseng Up Ginger, is slightly more savory, tame and refined.

I encountered the Manhattan Special at Rosario's Butcher Shop in Watchung Plaza.  What exactly is Manhattan Special? It's the award winning, original Espresso Coffee Soda, that's been made by a NY beverage company since 1895.  Consider it Starbucks' east coast, depression-era, great-grandfather - sort of.  

The flavor profile of the original Manhattan Special Espresso Coffee Soda is intense. It's a love it or hate it kind of beverage.  Strong, caffeinated, carbonated, and with a signature cola finish that soothes the stomach. The perfect antidote for the morning after an evening of over-indulgences.  Priced at only $1.50 a bottle, it's a bargain!

Today, Manhattan Special does make a variety of other sodas, and iced coffee drinks, also available at Corrado's.


The second cure the common hangover is less syrupy and sweet, yet soothing all the same.  It's called Ginseng Up and I discovered it at a tasting at Whole Foods, Montclair. 

* Photo courtesy of Ginseng UpAccording the product information Ginseng Up "is made with the finest ginseng available, ginseng that is potent and rich." The ginseng root contains "nutrients called saponins.  These nutrients act as "recovery units" for your nervous, circulatory and glandular systems."

Perfect. Circulatory system clarity for the morning after. I tried the Cola and Ginger flavors of Ginseng Up. Both were very soothing to the stomach, and not at all nauseatingly sweet. However, it may be nauseatingly expensive; carries it for $4.68 per bottle.

Here's an entertaining antiquity: a Manhattan Special commercial: