Glass of lemonade with lemon slice and mint garnish
Food - Drink
What Makes British Lemonade Different From American?
When Americans travel to the United Kingdom or other parts of Europe, they might be surprised at what kind of drink they receive when they order lemonade.
Americans know lemonade as a simple sweet and tart mixture of lemon juice, sugar, and water, but to Brits, lemonade is a sweet fizzy soda that's closer to Sprite or 7-Up.
British lemonade wasn't always so different from the American style, as seen in a recipe from "Mrs. Beeton's Book of Household Management," published in 1861.
This British book on Victorian housekeeping has a lemonade recipe that calls for five lemons (two zested and three juiced) and 3/4 cup of sugar to be mixed into 1 quart of water.
The mixture is left to sit for two days, instead of being enjoyed fresh, but it's not so different from American lemonade. Everything changed, however, in the 19th century.
With the popularization of carbonated drinks in England, lemonade became more focused on bubbles than lemon flavor. Today, many British lemonades use no real lemon juice at all.
It is possible to get lemonade with a hint of real fruit in Britain by ordering a "cloudy lemonade," which will usually get you a fizzy drink with lemon juice concentrate mixed in.
This "cloudy" lemonade may not be identical to the American style, but it's closer to what Americans may prefer as opposed to an artificially-flavored soda.