[Sca-cooks] warm beer, the 19th C ice trade
Stefan li Rous
StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
Mon Aug 3 20:25:22 PDT 2009
<<< A man after my own heart. A good beer (especially ale) should be
served about the same temperature as a good red wine. And I can't seem
to get people to *get it*!!! >>>
I don't agree, but then that maybe why I prefer white wines to red.
But here is a late-period take on the matter which I just added to the
BEVERAGES section in the Florilegium.
Warm-Beere-art (6K) 7/23/09 "An aside— on Beer and English
by THL Johnnae llyn Lewis.
It is interesting that in the 19th century, due mostly to the efforts
of one man, a big industry in New England was the exporting of blocks
of ice to the southern US and the Caribbean and as far away as India.
However, try as they might, unlike the British in other parts of the
world, they couldn't convince the British in the British Isles to
accept ice for cooling their drinks or much of anything else.
Just in case anyone is interested in more about this:
The Frozen-Water Trade: A True Story
Hyperion, New York
From Publishers Weekly
Weightman, a London journalist and documentary filmmaker, uncovers a
secret history and ends up transforming a dull-sounding topic into a
riveting read. He introduces turn-of-the-19th-century Bostonian
Frederic Tudor as an indefatigable American dreamer who sought to give
people something they didn't know they wanted-and make a killing while
he's at it. Tudor hatches scheme after scheme to "farm" ice from New
England ponds and deliver chunks of the brand-new commodity to the
Caribbean, and ultimately to India and elsewhere, so that items like
cold beverages and ice cream become cultural staples. Along the way
Tudor encounters disbelievers, creditors, rivals, imprisonment, yellow
fever, warm weather, political scuffles-even pirates. Weightman also
delves engagingly into the science of freezing and the particulars and
economics of ice transport and storage. Through it all, Weightman
juggles the players in the burgeoning but finally ephemeral business
while he spins a tale of a pre-refrigerated world. Issues of commerce
and entrepreneurship in an infant nation are revealed in this page-
turner, which gets its title from the name of the industry. When
Weightman visits Tudor's original ice source, locals think the author
is loony for suggesting that cubes from the pond cooled people in
Calcutta two centuries earlier-and made one man (and perhaps many
others) rich in the process. Weightman takes a relatively unknown part
of history (and the figure at its center), and creates a funny,
rollicking human adventure.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From The New Yorker
The idea sounds fanciful: harvest ice in Massachusetts and sell it to
people in the tropics. But the nineteenth-century entrepreneur
Frederic Tudor was immune to ridicule and single-minded in his
conviction that the ice trade could be profitable. He was also right.
This entertaining history of his crusade to turn New England into the
world's ice-maker shows how the combination of technological
innovation and sharp marketing--Tudor trained bartenders to use ice in
cocktails in order to illustrate the virtues of cold drinks--created
an industry that sold thousands of tons of ice a year to places like
India, Cuba, and the American South. As a case study of the
entrepreneurial mind, Weightman's book reminds us that creating demand
can be as important as meeting it.
Copyright © 2005 The New Yorker --This text refers to the Paperback
THLord Stefan li Rous Barony of Bryn Gwlad Kingdom of Ansteorra
Mark S. Harris Austin, Texas StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
**** See Stefan's Florilegium files at: http://www.florilegium.org ****
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