history

Ain’t No Party Like a Medieval European Wine Battle

Ain’t No Party Like a Medieval European Wine Battle

Those who equate wine with sophistication and civility must not know about the Battle of the Wines. Called La Bataille des Vins in its original French, this circa-1224 poem by Henry d’Andeli depicts an epic, wine-soaked battle royale. It’s rich with trash-talking clergy, nationalistic rivalries, and bathroom humor. The hero of our story is King […]

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The Complete and Slightly Insane History of Gin in England

The Complete and Slightly Insane History of Gin in England

Of all the various spirit categories that make up the dynamic culture of drink around the world, gin has arguably the most storied past. Its English heritage tells the story of British aristocracy, class warfare, technological innovation, the maritime industry, and more. Let’s go back to the very beginning, shall we?

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The Legend, Myth, and Majesty of the Pickleback

The Legend, Myth, and Majesty of the Pickleback

Let’s talk about hangovers. Hangovers are like 10th grade math. They get more difficult, and then nearly impossible to deal with as we get older. Hangovers in your 30s are no longer a badge of honor from last night’s exploits; they’re a scarlet letter, a not-so-friendly reminder from the universe that you aren’t that young […]

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11 Things You Should Know About Bombay Sapphire Gin

11 Things You Should Know About Bombay Sapphire Gin

There’s a lot more a lot of us should know about gin in general. Which means there’s definitely plenty we should know about a gin like Bombay Sapphire. The great grandchild of the 1761 gin distillery founded by Thomas Dakin in Warrington, England, Bombay burst onto the scene in the late ‘80s.

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From Drunk Monks to Boozy Brunch: A Brief History of Drinking in the Morning

From Drunk Monks to Boozy Brunch: A Brief History of Drinking in the Morning

“It’s 5 o’clock somewhere!” lamely jokes the guy in your office who thinks he’s being naughty for having a light beer at a 3:30 p.m. offsite meeting. Today his coworkers might snicker at his so-called transgressiveness. Yet for most of history, drinking before 5:00 p.m. was perfectly acceptable, if not necessary. Many people drank in […]

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How a World War Forever Changed the Way France Pairs Wine and Cheese

How a World War Forever Changed the Way France Pairs Wine and Cheese

White wines pair beautifully with cheese. Liz Thorpe, author of ”The Book of Cheese,” says serving oaky Chardonnay with creamy havarti is “crowd-friendly cheese and wine 101.” The Kitchn swears by floral Gewürztraminer with gooey, pungent morbier. And Loire Valley chèvre is “perfect” with local Pouilly Fumé and other Sauvignon Blancs. Yet the French, masters […]

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Neoprene Dreams: The Definitive History of the Koozie

Neoprene Dreams: The Definitive History of the Koozie

In the future, when visitors from a far-off galaxy discover our planet and sift through the rubble of a once-great civilization, they will undoubtedly stumble upon a koozie. Their alien phalanges will brush the dirt away to reveal a squishy, neon-blue relic. They’ll travel back home, eager to show their species the riches from the […]

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There’s a Secret Pub in the Tower of London, and Only 37 People Are on the Guest List

There’s a Secret Pub in the Tower of London, and Only 37 People Are on the Guest List

London’s toughest door admits fewer than 40 people a night. The bar itself is hiding in plain sight in one of the city’s most thronged tourist hubs. Welcome to the Yeoman Warders Club, also known as The Keys. The members-only establishment is situated in the Tower of London, the historic fortress and No. 1 paid tourist attraction […]

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The Oral History of Heady Topper

The Oral History of Heady Topper

Craft beers like The Alchemist’s Heady Topper don’t come along too often. Almost as soon as the Vermont-born beer hit shelves, the subtly cloudy, astoundingly complex, and deliciously juicy 8 percent ABV double IPA outgrew its now-iconic, black-on-silver 16-ounce can. It transformed into a full-fledged cultural phenomenon, complete with haters, cult devotees, and a whole […]

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