There’s no place quite like Canada! From its big cities and even bigger mountains to its small towns and tiny quirks, the country really has it all. Heck, the Great North has got something we almost guarantee you’ve never seen anywhere else before.

Located in Dawson City, Yukon, thirsty guests are encouraged to check out The Sourdough Saloon at The Downtown, a Coast brand hotel with one of the most unique drinks in the world.

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Among the squeamish? Click away, because while they’ve got a run-of-the-mill menu, they also offer a sip aptly named the Sourtoe Cocktail, which is garnished with a real-life toe.

In fact, taking a swig makes you a member of what they call the ‘Sourtoe Cocktail Club.’

“Established in 1973, the Sourtoe Cocktail has become a time-honoured tradition in Dawson City. To date, the club has over 100,000 members, hailing from every corner of the world,” the Dawson City website reads. 

Described as a shot of liquor and the dehydrated toe, the origin of this truly disgusting libation can be traced back over 100 years.


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“The legend of the first “sourtoe” dates back to the 1920s and features a feisty rum-runner named Louie Linken and his brother Otto. During one of their cross-border deliveries, they ran into an awful blizzard.  In an effort to help direct his dog team, Louie stepped off the sled and into some icy overflow—soaking his foot thoroughly,” they write.

“Fearing that the police were on their trail, they continued on their journey. Unfortunately, the prolonged exposure to the cold caused Louie’s big toe to be frozen solid.  To prevent gangrene, the faithful Otto performed the amputation using a woodcutting axe (and some overproof rum for anesthesia).  To commemorate this moment, the brothers preserved the toe in a jar of alcohol.”

Years later, the toe was discovered by Captain Dick Stevenson – a bartender with a strange sense of humour.


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After discussing it with friends, the creative mixologist decided to serve the dehydrated nub to his bravest customers and – to the surprise of many – drink it, they did.

Since then, over 25 toes have been donated to the bar and – no we’re not joking.

We guess that now the only question is: TOE be, or not TOE be a member of the club yourselves!

Would you try the cocktail, or are you lack-toes intolerant?

We won’t judge.

The Downtown Hotel – Dawson City, Yukon

Where: Corner of Second and Queen, Dawson City