Philadelphia Fish-House Punch

It’s the entertaining season, so let’s make some punch.

Combine in a punch bowl:

  • 1 pound of superfine sugar
  • 16 ounces of lemon juice (or lime juice)

Stir to dissolve. Add:

  • 3 cups of Jamaican rum
  • 12 ounces of cognac
  • 12 ounces of peach brandy
  • 3½ quarts water

Approximate yield: 25 cups

Adapted from the Philadelphia Telegraph, 1880 from a recipe dated 1795.


  • As always, drink responsibly.
  • You’ll need a large punch bowl, since the recipe yields over 6 quarts of punch.
  • Chill with a block of ice.
  • You might be able to use lemon sorbet as well, but then cut back the sugar a bit
  • Any golden, full-bodied rum can be substituted for the Jamaican rum.