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Sunday, July 04, 2010

Forget Tea, Beer Made the Revolution

If it weren't for beer, would our quarters now sport the Queen? Maybe. Revolution was forged by homebrewers over pints of ale in Boston's Green Dragon Tavern. Sure, it's tea they dumped into Boston Harbor, but it was beer that fueled their seditious schemes. In honor of their pluck, I offer you a recipe from the man who does appear on the quarter--the first President, and truly a brewer patriot.
To make Small Beer

Take a large Sifter full of Bran Hops to your Taste. — Boil these 3 hours. Then strain out 30 Gallons into a Cooler, put in 3 Gallons Molasses while the Beer is scalding hot or rather drain the molasses into the Cooler & strain the Beer on it while boiling Hot. Let this stand till it is little more than Blood warm. Then put in a quart of Yeast if the weather is very cold, cover it over with a Blanket & let it work in the Cooler 24 hours. Then put it into the Cask — leave the Bung open till it is almost done working — Bottle it that day Week it was Brewed.
Cheers and happy Independence Day, countrymen!

Text and photo, New York Public Library


  1. what is a Bran Hop?

  2. Ha! That's Awesome. Thanks for sharing Jeff!

    We actually brewed a batch of pale ale yesterday to celebrate our independence.

    Reason did a sweet video on craft beer a year or so back, about how craft beer was the true American Revolution. It's true.

  3. Frances, no idea. Those founding fathers talked funny.

    Matthew, a fitting ritual for the day.