By the time we hit 1800, Punch was long in the tooth as the drink of choice. More youthful whippersnappers were forcing it into a rocking chair while Sling and all its variations left off brochures for only the nicest rest homes. With the increasing industrialization and urbanization of society, there was less time for leisurely conversation over the bowl of punch, but the social standard remained. The leisure class yielded to the entrepreneur who had little time for idle chitchat. Yet the social need for tipping a glass or two with friends or neighbors remained, and the “short drink” stepped up to its evolutionary role. Called a “sling”, that short drink made with a bit of sugar dissolved into a splash or two of water and a shot of whatever spirit you preferred was meant to be “slung” back in a single gulp. Reminds me of all those “shooters” of a few years ago.
So, the local shop owner could slip by at the local saloon, say hello to Harry and Will who happened to be stopping by at about the same time, ask about how their families and businesses are doing, exchange a few items of local news, down a couple of gin slings, and be back minding the store within a few short minutes. Seems like the seeds for the contemporary sound bite and Twitter were sewn a couple hundred years ago …
The Archetypal Mix
Spirit, Sweet, and Water
Some common or classic drinks that fit the
Mint Julep, basic highball (spirit plus a mixer), Pimm’s Cup, Tequila Sunrise, Stinger, Black and White Russians, Dark ‘n Stormy, Rusty Nail, Absinthe Drip, Bellini, Irish Coffee, Mudslide, and any number of the so-called “martinis” like Chambord’s French Martini, Appletini, or Espresso Martini.
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