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An Adaptable Concept for Local Food Businesses

 
pollinator
Posts: 618
Location: Scioto county, Ohio, USA - Zone 6b
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I don't have the land or the capital at the moment to do this, but it needs to be a thing. So, in my household, we are huge fans of the Townsends channel on youtube and we are now collecting reprints of 18th century cookbooks. Far from our assumptions, the food was not bland. In fact, it was more interesting than typical home-cooked fare today. I recently made ribs with mace and paprika and some other typical flavors. They were divine. I am making fried chicken today the 18th century way with a marinade, and dredging it in unsifted wheat flour before frying it. The marinade is really simple and is just lemon juice, vinegar, parsley, black pepper, and nutmeg. I grind my own flour, so I use that and the flavor is unparalleled by any other fried chicken I have had. If you want salt, then add it after the chicken has been fried.

So, having been thus inspired...

I thought up a great way to make some coin: Build a Tavern. Now, it is most convincing when it is in the local style of architecture. If you are in a city, it should be in the same style as the oldest buildings there. If you are not in a city, then it should be the local frontier style, and the appearance should reflect the sort of fare you provide. If the only beverage you serve is beer, you should probably make the thing look like an every-man's place. If you serve wines, flip, and orange fool*, you might want a stone building to reflect the expense of your fare. And that's just drinks. How fancy are your dinners? Your desserts? Do you make a rich boiled pudding with lots of dried fruit, or a poor boiled pudding with none? Somewhere in-between?

Layout:
so most Taverns in the 17th and 18th centuries in Europe and the Colonies had two rooms on the ground floor, one for cooking and one for dining, and sometimes you could enter the cellars from the dining room, but only the barmaid or cook were allowed to enter. The door was often low so that the inebriated would wander over and hit their heads on the lintel rather than enter. You can't have some random drunk guy helping himself when you turn your back. On the upper floor is where the owner lived. Larger taverns often had an add-on structure for housing guests. Taverns were originally just restaurants that served alcohol. A distinction was made in British territories by calling a Tavern with lodging a Public House, this was later shortened to Pub. Bizarrely, most pubs today do not serve meals or have guest lodgings. Taverns with a large enough dining area functioned as a meeting place where church services, the courts, and political discussions were held. The original "no alcohol on sundays" laws in the US were because they didn't want people getting drunk during church service in the taverns. The new ones make no sense at all. Often, a tavern owner would buy a single newspaper and read it at a set time each week. This was because most people were illiterate, but running a tavern required the ability to read. Tavern owners often taught school in their dining rooms before opening for business, wrote letters for those who could not, acted as a translator between different local populations, read prices for seed, acted as a banker, and could order things by letter from merchants in another place. They were functionally more important than the local government.

Note the low wide door to the cellars, the width is for moving barrels. This tavern was in the Netherlands.




*this is the real name of a custard which can be served as a drink or can be eaten with a spoon (depending on how you prepare it), it's an orange flavored egg-nog sort of thing with booze and butter. It's found in the personal recipe book of Martha Washington, the first first lady.
 
I think I'll just lie down here for a second. And ponder this tiny ad:
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