Barside Wisdom: The Brief History of Apple Cider

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The history of apples and how they're used for booze.
Bourbon Apple Cider for the Holidays

Crisp fall temps make us crave cider. Did you know that apples have been around for more than 50 million years? They popped up after dinosaurs went extinct, and have been an important food source for living creatures for millennia. Our ancestors also figured out that apples can be used in booze. Many civilizations have experimented: The Greeks and Romans began making apple-based spirits in 55 B.C. A beverage called dépense, produced from apples steeped in water and open-fermented, was known in the Middle Ages. Later, the French developed a distilled, oak-aged apple brandy called calvados. Americans riffed on the concept to create applejack brandy (apparently George Washington was a big fan). Today, ciders are more popular than their high-proof predecessors, and people enjoy them hot and cold, and in a variety of cocktails. So join us in a toast to this humble fruit’s huge history (with special thanks to Amy Stewart and her amazing book, “The Drunken Botanist”). Cheers!

Warm Bourbon Apple Cider

In a pot heat up: 
1 gallon Apple cider cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger.
5 tsp. Ground cinnamon
2 1/2 tsp. Ground nutmeg
2 1/2 tsp. Ground ginger 

When mixture is hot but not boiling, remove from heat and add 3 cups of bourbon.

This recipe yields 20 servings.