Tuesday, December 28, 2010

American Drinks at the Vienna Exhibition (1873)

The following article appeared in the New York Times on September 2, 1873

AMERICAN DRINKS AT THE VIENNA EXHIBITION
  The special correspondent of the London Daily Telegraph at Vienna, writing on Aug. 11, after a week of very hot weather, says: "The American bars, three in number, drove a roaring trade. The Austrians have taken to cobblers and juleps with a heartiness bordering on enthusiasm, although, these nectarian compounds being somewhat expensive, the native consumer seldom goes in for a whole drink all to himself ; and there are few quainter sights in the big building, crowded as it is with extraordinary objects, than three heavily-bearded and spectacled Viennese sitting round a small marble-topped table, on which stands one amber-colored sherry-cobbler, their three straws plunged into its cool depths, their three heads in close proximity, their powers of suction strained to top pressure, lest any one of the three should get the better of his co-investors in the beverage to the extent of half a teaspoonful. Under the influence of this virtuous emulation, the cobbler vanishes like the card of a conjuror's trick, after which each competitor imbibes a huge draught of cold water. for which there is no charge, and pockets his straw. The straws are immensely popular here. I have seen persons of both sexes sucking up beer, coffee and 'plain soda' through them with an evident sense of exquisite and refined enjoyment. The bar-keepers tell me that the American and German ladies generally carry them away in their hair, through the frizzy masses of which they stick them in the manner of pins. The bar in the Rotunda started with a stock of 300,000, but has been obliged to renew its supplies twice since commencing business. About a hundred different descriptions of artful drink are made at this bar ; but the only one that seems to have laid hold of the Austrian public is the cobbler. Ten cobblers are drunk for every julep, cocktail, sling, smash, fix, or champarello. The drinking kiosques outside the building-English and German-have found it to their interest to provide cobblers for their insatiable customers."

(Transcribed by Ethan Bailey)

2 comments:

  1. That is pretty amusing...So is a "Cobbler" recipe forthcoming?

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  2. Forthcoming...yes, not sure how soon but stay tuned, it's on the list!

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