The Hot Toddy


Ubiquitous all over the world of bartending it is usually the first drinks that comes into the minds of drinkers when the cold weather finally sets in during the winter months. As with any mainstream & old cocktail there is a million stories of where it came from, who originally invented the classic or the right way to make one. Lets dive in: Romantic Origin: The Hot Toddy’s name is the biggest mystery. No one knows for certain where it came from, but there are two popular theories.

In 1781, poet Allan Ramsay published a poem called “The Morning Interview” that mentions Todian Spring. This spring, also called Tod’s Well, was the main water supply to Edinburgh, Scotland, so the Hot Toddy may have been named after it. Ramsay’s poem refers to Todian Spring water being used for a tea party. Since Todian Spring existed anyway, regardless of Ramsay invoking its name in his poetry, it is unclear why Ramsay is given credit for the name of the Hot Toddy cocktail by those who adhere to this theory about its naming.

Another theory states that since Great Britain was involved in trade with India at the time the Hot Toddy was invented, the cocktail may have been named for toddy, an Indian drink made from palm tree sap. Whether or not this is true, one thing is for certain: Palm tree sap is not a usual ingredient in a Hot Toddy.

The name itself can vary, being spelled “Totty” or “Tottie” at times, though these spellings are uncommon, and some would say, simply wrong. There are no options when it comes to the hotness of the Hot Toddy, as it is one of the most popular cold-weather drinks, even more popular in ski lodges than in pubs. A Hot Toddy ideally should be made and enjoyed at home, with a good book or a good friend.