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The Original Drinking Flag


While researching my gin journal, I became fascinated with a tradition of the British Navy based around a triangular piece of fabric known as a “Gin Pennant.” Usually made from a recycled signal flag, its creators would draw a drinking vessel on the pennant before hoisting it up the halyard as a kind of pre-Internet friend request.

As the story goes, officers of one ship would raise it to invite officers of other nearby ships for cocktails (usually gin-based, because England) when in port. 

Gin Pennant aboard the USS Gunnell

Crew of the USS Gunnell, an American submarine, on Midway Island in early 1944. The crew is displaying a gin pennant reportedly gifted to them by a British PT boat crew. This particular pennant lacks the traditional green Martini glass in the center panel. Photographer unknown.

A Time-Tested Design

Today, you can use the Drinking Flag to let your crew know when cocktail hour has come with a faithful, conveniently compact reproduction of a classic and highly-hospitable design that will give you many years of service in your home, workplace, or watering hole. The 100% wool felt pennant is made for me in Buffalo, NY by my friends at Oxford Pennant, designed by yours truly. It measures 9" tall x 27" long.

No Halyard, No Problem

Each kit includes a 16" / 40 cm miniature mast with which you can raise the flag safely indoors, made from real American hardwood. Please note that kits sent to Australia or New Zealand will not include the mini-mast due to restrictions on importing wood products.

Plot Your Favorite Gin Drinks

An included tasting notebook, 33 Jiggers of Gin, lets you sample 33 different gins and gin-based cocktails and determine your favorites in a bespoke journal format.

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