History of the Cocktail - The Birth of the Cocktail

  • National Archives Museum 700 Pennsylvania Ave NW Washington, DC, 20408 United States

In partnership with the National Archives, Derek Brown, the first-ever "Chief Spirits Advisor" to the Archives, has developed a new History of the Cocktail seminar series to discuss the role of spirits in U.S. history. In this ten-part series, some of the top writers, bartenders, spirit-makers, and thinkers in spirits and cocktails will discuss various eras in the history of the cocktail, shedding light on our Spirited Republic

The Birth of the Cocktail
Dale Degroff, David Wondrich, Duane Sylvestre
Moderator: Logan Ward, Garden & Gun Magazine

Though the cocktail is now ubiquitous in America, there was a time when it was virtually unknown. It makes its first appearance in 1803 in the Farmers Cabinet and is first defined in 1806 within a piece of political commentary in The Balance and Columbian Repository, in which it is described as ‘containing spirituous liquor of any kind, sugar, water and bitters.’ It goes from there to become not just a drink (and category of drinks) known throughout the nation but to be a signifier of our cultural, political and social life.

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