21 and Over: Veteran’s day historical drinks

Graphic by Carlie Sue Herrick

Kate Larson, Staff Writer

Veteran’s Day not only marks the anniversary of the end of World War I, but it also lands on a Friday this year.

This gives everyone in Whitewater the opportunity to honor veterans in their lives this weekend. To all Veterans, thank you for your service. Here are a few common drinks, with a surprising military history.


Beer had a significant role in the military. It was often handed out with rations to give soldiers courage before battle, or to unwind after. According to George Washington’s Mount Vernon (encyclopedia of George Washington), the original American general himself was known make sure the revolutionary army always had beer for the troops.

Gin & Tonic

This drink began as a remedy for illness. According to Business Insider, British soldiers who were sent to India, struggled with malaria outbreaks. Their only remedy for malaria was a drug called quinine which tastes terrible. Soldiers would mix their medicine with gin, lime and sugar to make it taste better. Sweeter tonic water, mixed with gin and lime is now popular.

Cuba Libre  (Rum & Coke)

The Cuba Libre was introduced when the Cuba Liberation Army was in the height of their war of independence from Spain. According to the Havana Journal, Coca-Cola had recently been introduced to Cuba with the arrival of the American Military. The phrase ‘Por Cuba Libre’ meaning ‘Free Cuba’ was a common toast that went along with this delicious drink.


Made with cognac, Cointreau, lemon juice and an orange garnish, a sidecar cocktail was created toward the end of World War I in France. According to Business Insider and Huffington Post, an American officer who always rode in a motorcycle sidecar created this drink as a remedy for a cold.21_over