THE FAMOUS ROMAN PUNCH.
How a Drink Made Exclusively for the Pope Became General.
The history of ponche a la romaine is curious. It has been the summer refreshment of successive popes for over 80 years, and their chefs were threatened with all kinds of cars and punishments if they ever divulged secrets of its preparation. When Napoleon invaded Italy in 1796 this terrible interdict was broken through. A son of Pius VI's chief confectioner, by name Molas, as soon as he found the French were conquerors, ran away from his father and united his fortunes with them. The young man became the favorite servant of the Empress Josephine, and after her death became cook to the Russian Prince Lieven [Prince Christoph Heinrich von Lieven (1774–1838)], whom he accompanied to London when that Prince was appointed ambassador to the Court of St. James. This Russian first made this papal beverage in London by introducing it at the Prince's table. The Prince Regent asked for the recipe and permitted copies to be given to a select few of his friends, and by degrees it became better known, and is now well known all over the world.
The original Vatican recipe is:
"Prepare a very rich pineapple or sherbet; have it a little part with lemon juice, taking the greatest care that none of the zest or oil from the yellow rind, with the bitterness from the white underlying pith, be allowed to enter into the composition of this sherbet. In order to be certain of this it is better, first, to grate off the yellow rind from the lemons, then to carefully remove all the white pith and to make assurance doubly sure, washed the skin that fruit in clear water; after which press out the juice free from the rind of the fruit; strain the juice so as to remove all the seeds or pips from it; then add to it the pineapple mixture. It must be then very well frozen. This sherbet, being very rich, will not freeze hard, but will be a semi-ice. Just before the punch is to be served add and work into it for every quart of the ice one gill of Jamaica [rum]; and for every two quarts one pint of the best champagne. Never use the wine from damaged bottles or leaky corks, as it will be sure to deprave and perhaps entirely spoil your punch. After you have well incorporated these liquors add cream or meringue mixtures." — Anerucab Analyst.
 The New Haven Evening Register.
11-22-1889. page 1. New Haven, Connecticut.
Transcribed by John Peter Thompson 23rd November 2014.