Chocolate and Tea
Americans drank hot beverages made from ingredients grown thousands of miles away—cacao beans and sugar from the Caribbean or South America and tea leaves shipped from China or India. They purchased special utensils to enjoy the ritual of hot chocolate at breakfast, or afternoon and evening tea. These drinks provided nourishment as well as opportunities for family and friends to gather around the cup.
Would you like to learn more about colonial beverages and the production of chocolate in the Merchant Era? You can start your research with these selected chapters from Chocolate: History, Culture, and Heritage (2009), edited by Louis E. Grivetti and Howard-Yana Shapiro:
Nation of Nowhere: Jewish Role in Colonial American Chocolate History, by Celia D. Shapiro
Chocolate Preparation and Serving Vessels in Early North America, by Amanda Lange
Chocolate and Other Colonial Beverages, by Frank Clark
Chocolate Production and Uses in 17th and 18th Century North America, by James F. Gay
From Stone Metates to Steel Mills: The Evolution of Chocolate Manufacturing, by Rodney Snyder, Bradley Foliart Olsen, and Laura Pallas Brindle