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Want a twist on the Screwdriver? Try the Harvey Wallbanger, a recipe for its more sophisticated cousin drink.

Harvey Wallbanger

It’s time for another 1970’s drink: make way for the Harvey Wallbanger! This easy highball cocktail is the Screwdriver‘s more sophisticated cousin. It might sound low-brow, but this drink stars Galliano, an herbal Italian liqueur invented in the 1890’s. It gives this otherwise boring brunch drink a complex, funky herbal finish. One sip and we gave this one a stamp of approval. Is it worth grabbing yet another specialty bottle of liquor for this one? Here’s what we think.

Harvey Wallbanger ingredients

The Harvey Wallbanger is a highball cocktail that’s a variation on the Screwdriver, featuring orange juice, vodka, and Galliano liqueur. Like many famous cocktails, the exact origin of this drink is unknown. Some sources say it was invented in the 1950’s by a bartender named Duke Antone, but other research says it doesn’t hold up.

What we do know is that in the 1960’s, the company that imports Galliano liqueur hired a man to create a cartoon of Harvey Wallbanger to sell the drink. The image of the colorful, anxious-looking surfer dude caught on and helped the drink become massively popular in the 1970’s. Of course like any fad, Harvey’s popularity has faded. But we think this drink is worth reviving! What’s in a Harvey Wallbanger? The Harvey Wallbanger ingredients are:

  • Vodka
  • Orange juice (fresh squeezed, if possible)
  • Galliano liqueur

What’s Galliano? Is it worth buying?

Confession: neither of us here at A Couple Cooks were alive in the heyday of Galliano. But this gives us an advantage: we can taste it without preconceived notions. Is it worth buying a bottle for the Harvey Wallbanger? Here’s our assessment:

  • Galliano is a bright yellow, sweet herbal Italian liqueur. It’s been made in Tuscany, Italy since 1896.
  • What does Galliano taste like? It’s sweet and complex, with a strong vanilla flavor and subtle notes of anise, juniper, peppermint, cinnamon, and citrus.
  • How much does Galliano cost? It costs about $17 to $20 for a 375 ml bottle and about $30 to $35 for a 750 ml bottle. We recommend getting the small size, since you’ll only use a bit at a time.
  • Is it worth buying? Yes! You can drink it as a digestif (a shot after a meal), or mix it into Galliano cocktails. Try the Golden Dream, Golden Cadillac and Yellow Bird.
Harvey Wallbanger recipe

Three tips to the best Harvey Wallbanger recipe

Once you’ve got your bottle of Galliano, making this Harvey Wallbanger recipe is a breeze. It’s essentially just mixing the ingredients together…but we have a few tips for how to make the best drink experience.

  • Float the Galliano on top. Once you’ve mixed your orange juice and vodka, do this: Pour the Galliano onto the back of a spoon into the drink. This helps the liquid to slow down and settle on the top of the drink. You’ll get a beautiful sweet vanilla whiff every time you take a sip.
  • Use fresh squeezed orange juice if you can. The fragrant flavor of fresh juice wins every time. You can make it with bottled, but fresh squeezed is best.
  • Use clear ice. To get the beautiful look in the photos above, make a batch of clear ice. It makes crystal clear ice that looks like it’s from a craft cocktail bar, versus cloudy ice that comes out of an ice tray.

Garnish and serve! Your guests will be mega impressed.

Harvey Wallbanger drink

More 1970’s drinks

Love drinking retro drinks that scream of the 1970s? We love cocktails from all eras. Here are a few more greats from the 1970s:

  • Amaretto Stone Sour Amaretto was king in the 70’s! This drink pairs it with orange juice and sour mix.
  • French Connection Equal parts Cognac and amaretto make a sophisticated slow-sipper! Dubbed for the 1970’s movie of the same name.
  • Rusty Nail Born in the 1930’s, but popular in the 1970’s! Stars Scotch and Drambuie.
  • Fuzzy Navel It’s more 1980’s, but this retro combo of peach schnapps and OJ is a winner
  • Best Alabama Slammer Signature 1970’s: OJ, amaretto, and sloe gin.
  • Godfather Cocktail A simple mix of Scotch and amaretto.

When to serve a Harvey Wallbanger

Harvey Wallbanger works for brunch or lazy afternoons on the patio. Drink it as a:

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Harvey Wallbanger

Classic Harvey Wallbanger

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x


Want a twist on the Screwdriver? Try the Harvey Wallbanger, a recipe for its more sophisticated cousin drink.


  • 2 ounces (¼ cup) vodka
  • 3 ounces (6 tablespoons) orange juice (fresh squeezed, if possible)
  • ¾ ounce (1 ½ tablespoons) Galliano liqueur (Galliano L’Autentico)
  • Ice, for serving (try clear ice)
  • For the garnish: Orange wedge, cocktail cherry (optional)


  1. Add the vodka and orange juice to a glass with ice and stir a few times until cold. 
  2.  Pour the Galliano over the back of a spoon onto the drink. Garnish and  serve. 
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Cocktails
  • Diet: Vegan

Keywords: Harvey Wallbanger

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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  1. I rather enjoy a Harvey Wallbanger. However, the bartender who first made me one of these also adds triple sec. I did not see this in any of the recipes on this website. Have you ever heard of making “Mr. Wallbanger” this way?