Why do we consider eggnog to be a Christmas drink?
Of all the things that are released around the holidays, eggnog might just be the most festive and seasonal of all. But why is it considered a Christmas drink? What makes it a drink that we only seem to enjoy in the final months of the year (particularly at Christmas)?
Whether it is a holiday party, dinner with family, or even just a personal choice, there is something special about pouring a glass of eggnog at Christmas Time. In a detailed history of the drink, which was shared by Time Magazine, we learned that eggnog actually originated in medieval Britain. It was actually an evolution of a drink made with ale and milk called a posset. That original drink was served hot, and over time it evolved to include ingredients such as figs and egg (still not sure how someone made the leap into adding eggs to their milk, but we aren’t necessarily complaining).
At that time, ingredients such as milk and eggs were really only available to people who had money. And when you wanted to toast your good fortune, this was the go-to drink. By the 1700s, aristocrats had opted to add alcohol such as brandy to the mix because it helped to keep the eggs and milk from going bad. When the drink made its way over to America, the cost of brandy was more prohibitive, which led to the addition of rum as the alcohol of choice.
But why is eggnog a Christmas drink?
Now that you have a better idea of where eggnog came from, you’re probably wondering how it became a holiday drink. According to Delish, there are likely two reasons for why this beverage is associated with Christmas primarily.
The first reason is that eggnog is often served hot and the best time to drink hot beverages is during the winter. In both the U.S. and Britain, at the time, hot drinks were mostly served during cold months, and as a primarily hot drink, it just made sense to keep eggnog during those colder months.
Then there is the fact that during the Revolutionary War, rum was much scarcer. And since that was the alcohol that people in America were using in their eggnog, one would want to leave a rum-spiked beverage until there was a special occasion. Ultimately, this meant saving eggnog for Christmas and the holidays.
With the drink having a history of being used as a celebratory beverage, while also being associated with colder months, it ends up making sense that eggnog would become a Christmas drink.
Although there is no reason to keep eggnog to the holiday season, it seems that it is all about tradition and we are okay with that. And while we don’t necessarily throw rum into our eggnog, we are definitely pouring a glass for ourselves this year. In fact, we already did that on Thanksgiving, because why not (and no, we didn’t add any alcohol).
Did you know the history of this holiday drink? Do you even like eggnog? Do you think this is a drink that could escape Christmas and become less of a seasonal favorite? Tell us what you think in the comments.