Hot, sun-filled days and refreshing, ice-filled drinks are a match made in heaven. When the temperature rises, downing a glass of iced tea or lemonade is a sure-fire way to cool off. Today, iced tea and lemonade are staples of any outdoor picnic or get-together, but have you ever thought about the invention history of these tasty beverages?

The "World's Fair" Myth

The 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis is credited as the birthplace of many food and drink inventions, including iced tea. The story goes that merchant Richard Blechynden, a tea plantation owner, planned on giving some of his hot tea samples away at the Fair. With temperatures that day soaring, few visitors were interested. After Blechynden dumped some ice into the tea, he "invented" a drink that was a huge hit at the Fair.

Iced Tea: A Cool Beverage InventionBut according to Missouri historian Lyndon Irwin, an article written 14 years before the Fair and published in the Nevada Noticerspecifically mentions iced tea. The story chronicled a huge meal that was served during a reunion of ex-confederate veterans. After a meal that included 4,800 pounds of bread, 400 pounds of sugar and 60 gallons of pickles, patrons quenched their thirst on "880 gallons of iced tea."

Also, a St. Louis World Fair historian notes that people in the South served cool tea in their homes during the summer, and called it "sweet tea." In the days before Louis Pasteur invented refrigeration, ice was considered a luxury and therefore not used regularly.

So while iced tea may have been popularized at the 1904 Fair, it seems to have been in use beforehand, with no clear date of invention.

An Ice-Cold Glass of Lemon Juice?

Have you ever wondered why "lemonade" is called "lemonade" and not "lemon juice" (like "apple juice" or "orange juice")? Lemonade is a mixture of lemon juice, sugar and water, which is why it's called "lemonade." Orange juice and apple juice mixed with water and sugar could be called orangeade or appleade, respectively, although because the juices are naturally sweet, this is not common.

Lemonade was invented in Paris in 1630 when sugar imported from the French West Indies dropped in price. Despite its Parisian roots, lemonade in Europe is quite different nowadays – it's carbonated.

Here in the States, new types of lemonade continue to be invented, including raspberry lemonade and pink lemonade, which includes red grape juice for color. And, who could forget the hugely popular invention of the iced tea-lemonade blend?

The Hard Stuff...

Sun-kissed beaches, white sands, a tropical breeze...what's missing here? A Frozen daiquiri, of course, complete with a fruit wedge garnish and decorative mini-umbrella!

Daiquiri is a family of cocktails whose main ingredients are rum and lime juice. There are an infinite number of daiquiri variations, many of which resemble an alcoholic Slurpee. But the most authentic, subtle recipe hails from Havana, Cuba in one of the most famous bars in the world, the Floridita. This special frozen drink recipe was reputedly invented for writer Earnest Hemmingway, said to be a huge fan of the daiquiri.

The name Daiquirì is also the name of a beach near Santiago, Cuba. Legend has it that an American named Jennings Cox, an engineer who worked in a nearby iron mine, invented the drink when he ran out of gin during a gathering.

Cox was concerned about serving local rum to his American guests, so he sweetened the taste by adding lime juice and sugar. Cox's chance acquaintance, Admiral Lucius Johnson, took the recipe and loads of rum back to the mainland, where he introduced the drink to the Army and Navy Club in Washington D.C.

Although history credits Cox, Cuban residents likely enjoyed this invention before Cox ever set foot on the island.


As you lounge in deckchairs and bask in the sun this summer, we at InventHelp® hope you remember the story of these refreshing inventions that will help you beat the heat.


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