Home Bartending: Celebrate July 4th with these 1776-era cocktails


Although the word "cocktail" wasn't coined until the 1800s, mixed drinks were all the rage when America got its independence. Many were made with rum or whiskey, and punch was the term du jour. Both refreshing and timeless, why not toast the weekend with these 3 smashing cocktails of yesteryear?

Rum-Brandy Punch
Hearkening back to the 1600s, punch became a popular drink for sailors whose pints of beer would spoil on their long voyages. They turned to what they could find in India and Indonesia – mostly rum. This punch is a yummy favorite.

4 lemons' peels
1 c fine-grained raw sugar
8 oz lemon juice
24 oz VSOP cognac or armagnac
8 oz dark, strong Jamaican rum
40 oz cold water Click here for recipe.
Click here for recipe.


St. Cecilia Society Punch
This citrusy sparkling punch was the beverage served at the highly exclusive St. Cecilia Society, a music organization founded in 1766 in Charleston, South Carolina. Many versions of this punch exist on the internet, and with the green tea ingredient, I think this is probably an updated version. Although not called for, you can add a bit of mint on top for a refreshing garnish.

2 medium lemons, thinly sliced
3/4 cup brandy
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tea bags green tea
3/4 cup dark rum, such as Gosling's
1/2 small pineapple, peeled, cored, sliced 1/2 inch thick, and cut into small wedges
1 750-ml bottle dry sparkling wine, such as Domaine Ste. Michelle Brut, chilled
6 cups sparkling water, chilled
Click here for recipe.


The Stone Fence, aka Stone Wall
This hard drink is not for the light(weight) hearted. The beverage became popular in 1775 at Remington's Tavern in Castleton, Vermont before a raid at Fort Ticonderoga.

2 ounces dark rum, applejack, or rye whiskey
hard cider
Click here for recipe.

Images: Shutterstock