Yes, that Daniel Webster. Though a quick Google search for Daniel Webster’s Punch will bring up several variant recipes, they all refer to the same man—the famed Massachusetts senator of yore. In his book Punch, David Wondrich attributes the wealth of different recipes floating around to the fact that, at least in part, asking for a glass of Webster’s Punch seemed to be akin to a 19th-century version of “stump the bartender.” No one really knew which version Daniel Webster actually preferred and, thus, riffs abound.
The original version of this recipe, adapted by Wondrich, comes from the Steward & Barkeeper’s Manual (1869) with the assertion that this was the very punch recipe that Webster gave to his friend, “Major Brooks, of Boston”, before his death. True or not, it’s a tasty punch and one whose quantities and ice mold can easily be adjusted for season and party size.
Reprinted with permission from Sherry by Talia Baiocchi, copyright © 2014. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc.