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5 Colonial-Era Drinks You Should Know

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5 Colonial-Era Drinks You Should Know

CORIN HIRSCH

Colonial-era Americans era drank from breakfast till bedtime. 

Cast your memory back to grade-school history: Chances are that in between making tricorn hats out of construction paper and learning about George Washington's heroics, you weren't taught that John Adams began each day with a tankard of cider, that the Mayflower was loaded with barrels of beer, or that after the war, Washington traded his sword for a whiskey still.

That's because traditional histories don't usually mention that our colonial forefathers (and mothers) swam in a sea of booze from breakfast till bedtime. Whether they were working, writing, selling goods, getting married, or even fighting, early Americans were often tipsy—their incessant drinking a cultural extension of Old World beliefs that fermented beverages were safer than water. The colonial-era day didn't begin until after a dram of bitters or stiffener of beer. By the time the Revolutionary War began, the adults of the thirteen colonies drank an impressive amount of alcohol—the equivalent of several shots every day.

Due to their lust for drink, early Americans came up with a baffling variety of proto-cocktails from their slim culinary arsenal of rum, cider, ale, cream, sugar, molasses, eggs, spices and citrus. Some of the drinks they consumed—such as shrubs and hard cider—are again on the ascendance behind the bar; others, such as Whistle-Belly Vengeance (bits of stale bread dropped into warm, sour beer, then sweetened with molasses) might deserve to stay lost to history.  :snip:  http://drinks.seriouseats.com/2014/04/colonial-era-drinks-cocktails-rum-flip-stonefence-syllabub-rattleskull.html

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