National Hot Toddy Day

Five Food Finds about Cocktails

  • The first cocktail party was held for 50 house guests in St. Louis in 1917. The house still stands today….as the  residence of the Archbishop.
  • While Prohibition resulted in a decline in alcohol it also resulted in a dramatic increase in crime as money flowed to the bad guys. Crime rose as high as 500% in some countries. Consequently, government costs soared while tax revenue declined.
  • Calling an illegal bar a ‘speakeasy’ came from a lady barkeep who would warn her customers to “speak easy, boy, speak easy” whenever they became loud enough to attract police.
  • A greater crime was what it did to the cocktail. Prior to Prohibition, America was enjoying its first golden age of mixology. Once liquor became illegal, ‘rum runners” brought it in by boat but watered down their blends so they could ship less and make more.
  • At the same time, gin and vodka replaced rum and whiskey as cocktail ingredients because they didn’t require as much aging and were easier to make illegally.

On This Day in Food History…

1874 Gail Borden died. Borden was the Inventor of the process for making condensed milk, and founder of New York Condensed Milk Co., later to become the Borden Co. (

1917 The French government regulated the price of Gruyere cheese as a war rationing method.

1949 The first recorded snowfall in Los Angeles, California.

1963 The ‘Whisky A Go-Go’ opens in Los Angeles – the first disco in the U.S.

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