Behold the rain which descends from heaven upon our vineyards, there it enters the roots of the vines, to be changed into wine, a constant proof that God loves us, and loves to see us happy.—Benjamin Franklin, in a letter written to André Morellet, 1779.


Beverages and Sauces of Colonial Virginia:

Cups, Punches, Mixed Drinks and Other Delicacies Enjoyed by the Founding Fathers and Mothers. Includes “The Drinker’s Dictionary” by Benjamin Franklin

Laura S. Fitchett

Beverages and Sauces of Colonial Virginia by Laura Fitchett and The Drinker’s Dictionary by Benjamin Franklin.

Beverages and Sauces of Colonial Virginia by Laura S. Fitchett, part of the series Classic Cocktail Guides and Retro Bartender Books. The book includes “The Drinker’s Dictionary” by Benjamin Franklin. In addition to being a Founding Father, stateman, and diplomat, Franklin was a successful writer and editor, best known today for his book Poor Richard’s Almanack.

Classic Cocktail Guides and Retro Bartender Books

Series Editor: Joanne Asala

In Colonial America, drinking wine and beer was often considered safer than drinking water, so it should not be surprising that our Founding Fathers and Mothers would start the morning with a drink, imbibe throughout the day, and top off their evenings with a night cap. Alcohol was considered the great panacea and could cure the sick and give strength to the worker.

Beverages and Sauces of Colonial Virginia: Cups, Punches, Mixed Drinks and Other Delicacies Enjoyed by the Founding Fathers and Mothers provides dozens of recipes for drinks enjoyed during the era, including George Washington’s Cherry Bounce, Thomas Jefferson’s Apple Toddy, Flowerdew Hundred Liqueur of Cloves, and Middle Plantation Whiskey Cordial. To accompany these tasty beverages are a variety of sauces to serve at mealtime.

If you are a historical reinactor, are planning a Colonial American–style wedding, a Revolutionary War–themed bash, or just want to sip an Early American speciality, this book is for you! As a bonus, we’ve included Benjamin Franklin’s The Drinker’s Dictionary, with dozens of Colonial American terms to describe drunkeness. Beverages and Sauces of Colonial Virginia is part of the Classic Cocktail Guides and Retro Bartender Books series.

Sample Cocktail Recipes

Thomas Jefferson’s Apple Toddy

Mode.— Pour over eighteen pippin apples well roasted (without burning) one gallon of boiling water, and let it stand till cold; then press through a sieve to remove skin and seeds. Add to the mixture two quarts of sugar, one quart of brandy, one quart of rum, one quart of sherry, one pint of madeira, one-half pint of arrack, one-half pint of peach brandy, one-half pint of curacoa liqueur, and one grated nutmeg. Mix well and serve in punch glasses.

George Washington’s Cherry Bounce

Mode.— Fill a demijohn with morello cherries, and fill it up with brandy. In December pour it off and sweeten with clarified sugar. Crack some stones and put in the kernels. Fill a three-gallon demijohn with wild cherries, and fill it also with brandy, which must not be poured off as from the morello cherries, but keep it to add to the morello cherry bounce as you require it. Always mix at least a week before you wish to use it. Allow a pint of the wild-cherry brandy to one-half gallon of the morello cherry brandy.

House of Burgess’s Mint Julep

“There can’t be good living where there is not good drinking.”— Benjamin Franklin

Mode.— The strength and degree of sweetness of the julep are matters of taste, but the advice is offered—do not use too little liquor nor too much sugar. Half hour before the julep is to be served, pour upon leaves or sprigs of mint a whiskey glass of liquor (whiskey or French brandy or any properties of the two desired) for each julep to be made. At the same time place in another tumbler (in each case when not over three juleps are to be made) a teaspoonful of sugar for each glass of liquor. Add sufficient water to barely submerge the sugar. Just before the juleps are to be served remove the leaves of mint, being careful not to bruise them. Pour the liquor upon the sugar and continue pouring back and forth until the sugar is held in suspension. Divide the mixture into the number of juleps desired, and pour it severally into thin glasses filled with finely crushed ice. Stir vigorously until frost forms upon the glass. Garnish with fresh sprigs of mint.

Beverages and Sauces of Colonial Virginia is available from Amazon.com.

ISBN: 978-1-880954-40-9

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