"Historical" drinks to serve at winter party?
Try a Coow Woow, purported to be the first mixed drink to be served in America, in 1664.
To make a Coow Woow, pour 2 parts rum and 1 part ginger brandy over crushed ice, stir and strain into a cocktail glass. I believe that the ice is a fairy recent addition to make it a bit smoother to drink.
Excellent ideas—thank you! I've never tried saison, but it sounds perfect. I was thinking I might make drinks and foods that were popular or at least marginally available in 1885 in rural Georgia. Which kind of limits the options a bit (but what I need are limits when it comes to parties and food and drink!). Could perhaps start a batch of metheglin, which is similar to mead...
If you are a beer maker, my husband and our friends make mead (dry and sweet), which you need to make months in advance.
Alternatively, someone recommended this cherry cordial to me - she started it last month and it will be ready for Christmas:
Grandpa's Bing Cherry Liqueur
submitted by Diane Lauerman
as many jars as you are thirsty
bing cherries to fill jars half full
a lot of granulated sugar
a lot of brandy or vodka
(1) First, taste vodka. Good, isn't it? (2) Make sure jars are real clean and dry. (3) stem cherries. (4) Fill jar (or jars) half full with cherries. (5) Add enough sugar to just cover cherries. (6) Leave this alone until the sugar dissolves. This will take 3-7 days, depending upon the weather. (7) It's hard to wait, so taste the vodka each day. (8) Pour brandy or vodka to within one inch of top of jar and cover tightly. (9) Place in dark cupboard. The jar. Not the chef. (10) Wait three to six months. The longer you can wait, the better. You can do the same with blackberries, remembering to always sample the vodka first. The cherries are usually ripe late summer. You'll have some nice gifts for friends at Christmas.
In general, any fruit cordial or schnapps is something you should start now if you want it by Christmastime. Yum!