There are all sorts of weird and wonderful dining and drinking experiences to be had across Canada. For one bar in Yukon, weird and wacky is certainly the name-of-the-game, as they serve a drink with an actual human toe floating in it! While this does sound completely and utterly disgusting, there is a story behind the severed-toe-drink, and it might just convince you to give it a try! 

The Sourtoe Cocktail Club is a little bar located in Dawson City in Yukon, and is well-known locally for being the best spot for getting toe-tally wasted. The club’s age-old tradition involves being served a shot of whiskey, with an actual frozen, severed, human toe in it, to keep it cool!

If this was not weird enough already, things got even stranger down at the Sourtoe Cocktail Club recently, as the actual owner of the frozen-whisky-toe went in to visit the bar, and tasted a shot of whisky with his own amputated toe floating in it!

Travelling all the way from the United Kingdom to taste his own toe, the amputated-toe-man told CBC News, "I know it sounds quite revolting, but actually I did it and it's perfectly fine. I suppose it's just like having a black ice cube in there, really.” Yikes!

This unsightly and unusual tradition began way back in the 1970s, when local man, Captain Dick Stevenson, discovered an amputated toe while cleaning out a cabin at the Dawson’s Downtown Hotel. He used the toe to open the Sourtoe Cocktail Club, and the rest is history!

While the toe-whisky does sound far from appetizing, the ‘club’ actually has more than 100,000 members worldwide, all who have given the toe a go! However, you must follow certain rules in order to properly qualify as a club-member!

On their website, the Sourtoe Cocktail Club explains, “Try the World Famous Sourtoe Cocktail only at the Downtown Hotel. You can drink it fast, or you can drink it slow, but your lips MUST touch the toe!”

The owner of the toe, Nick Griffiths, went for the ‘fast’ option, and downed his toe-whisky quickly, explaining, "You know it's your toe, you know who it's been."

Griffiths’ toe ended up in the Sourtoe Cocktail Club after he suffered severe frostbite in Yukon in 2018, when he was racing during the Yukon Arctic Ultra. The long-distance, backcountry, middle-of-winter race is pretty brutal, and several competitors fell victim to serious frostbite that year.

Keen to make sure that his later-amputated toes would not go to waste, Griffiths packaged them up and sent them to Dawson City, all the way from the U.K.

If you're looking for a grotesque and unusual way to take your whisky, the Sourtoe Cocktail Club is always recruiting new club members!

That said, you have to be prepared to taste some gnarly old frozen toes before you make it, which is enough to toe-tally make anyone cringe!


There are stories everywhere. If you spot a newsworthy event in your city, send us a message, photo, or video @NarcityCanada on Twitter and Instagram.


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