“The American thirst for coffee was slow to develop in a young country whose rambunctious citizens preferred booze.
In Colonial homes, beer and cider were the usual beverages at mealtimes… even children shared the dinner beer.”

Uncommon Grounds by Mark Pendergrast

Even if you’re not a coffee enthusiast, this book is full of interesting stories, both cultural and economic. The first chapters cover the spread of coffee as a beverage and this line, among many others, captured my attention.

I’m not sure this was only a Colonial American thing, but we do have our special quirks. I like thinking of our nation growing out of a bunch of rambunctious, drunken youngsters, although I don’t think it’s altogether accurate.

When clean water is unreliable, beer and cider are healthier alternatives. Besides, their versions were not the 8% IPA’s that are popular today. And with a meal, a low ABA beer or cider does not have the effect you think.

I laughed at the shocking statement, “even children.” I wonder if he meant it to be that way. As if children all over the world have always been shielded from such horrors. Personally, when water isn’t available, I’d rather my children had beer or cider with a meal than a juice box or soda.