Friday, April 23, 2010

Harvey Wallbanger Progeny Imperiled by Fire

You don't expect to write two Harvey Wallbanger items in the course of one day. (Hell, you don't expect to write one.) But sometimes fate intervenes.

Shortly after I posted my item about the iconic vodka cocktail making a surprise appearance on the drink menu at Keith McNally's Pulino's, I was sent a link to a New York Post story about a fire on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. What's a fire got to do with a drink? Well, the family affected were the Bedners, headed by husband and father David Bednar. David is the son of George Bednar, the Galliano salesman who is largely responsible for making the Harvey Wallbanger a popular quaff. (He successfully promoted the drink in the 1970s, but didn't invent it, as has been widely reported. Donato 'Duke' Antone was the creator.)

David and his wife Sally are both bankers. A two-alarm blaze broke out in the early hours of Thursday morning in a vacant apartment at 12 E. 80th St. beneath the home of the Bednars. David rushed his family to the roof, where they ran two roofs over to safety.
We learn something about George Bednar in the article. He played with the St. Louis Cardinals, and helped Notre Dame with a national football championship in 1964.  I wonder if any Harvey Wallbanger history went up in flames with the house.

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