A few weeks ago, Lil Wayne was hospitalized for a second time this year after a series of unexplained seizures, likely caused by countless years of sipping Sizzurp, a.k.a. “lean” or “purple drank.” Our reaction: If Wayne likes it, you know it must be good.
Just playing—we’re not advising that you recreationally indulge in the original purple drank recipe, a potent mix of promethazine with codeine syrup, Sprite, and Jolly Ranchers served in a Styrofoam cup. But a few bars and restaurants across the country have quality Purple Drank riffs, so you can feel like Weezy F. Baby while keeping out of the ICU. Consult our guide, so you too can sip until you lean hard.
- Sweet Chick (Brooklyn): This Williamsburg house of chicken and waffles has a take on sizzurp that’s actually a riff on the classic sloe gin fizz (“once a morning drink and now a campus classic,” according to cocktail historian David Wondrich), made with Welch’s grape soda.
- Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop (New Orleans): This 250-year-old French Quarter stalwart serves Frozen Voodoo Juice, a purple daiquiri made with Everclear, served in a Styrofoam to-go cup. We admit, this doesn’t sound all that much classier than Wayne’s version, though at least it’s a bit safer.
- Le Bon Ton Roule (Seattle): This New Orleans-inspired pub serves up Purple Drank made from vodka, Grand Marnier, lemons, and Parfait d’Amour. We advise that you refrain from saying the words “Parfait d’Amour” in the presence of a Southern rapper.
While you’re sipping your codeine-less cocktails, fret not: After the recent incident, Wayne confirmed his full recovery via Twitter: “I’m good everyone. Thx for the prayers and love.’’ Cheers to Lil’ Tunechi’s improved health.