Have you ever wondered why there are so many different kinds of alcohol on the shelves in liquor stores? Why there always seems to be some regional specialty when you travel? Alcohol was originally a way to preserve leftover crops after the harvest, first in beer and wine and then later in spirits after distillation started to become more widely used. That’s why you find Limoncello in Italy and Bourbon in Kentucky- because that’s what people living there had to work with, and over the decades they kept refining their techniques until they developed the spirits you know and love today.
Absinthe, for example, originated in Switzerland. It was distilled from native grains and flavored with native herbs to create a one-of-a-kind spirit. Applejack was developed in America using the process of Brandy but it was stored in smaller whiskey barrels, giving it more of a barrel characteristic. Once again, people were using what they had available to them and the process just stuck. Learn more about the origins of dozens of spirits from around the world from this infographic!