Wine was one of the Roman drinks that was guzzled up in large quantities by ancient Romans who regarded a meal quite bland and incomplete without it. The Romans liked their alcoholic beverages quite a lot and one among them was the wine that was considered a far better option than drinking beer. Beer was the drink of barbarians, thought the Romans. Drinking undiluted wine was considered rude and against Roman culture, and therefore, Romans drank it by mixing water.
When it came to varieties, there were quite a few like red and white wine. Romans also drank a type of wine called mulsum. This wine was prepared by adding honey to the regular wine. Maintaining vineyards was a common practice in ancient Rome and these vineyards produced some of the best quality wines like Setian and Massic.
One may not know but ancient Romans ate biscuits. In those times biscuits were called Bucellatum Hardtrack that were prepared out of mixing flour, water and salt. These were salty biscuits that had a rough texture and were as hard as rock. These biscuits were baked in local bakeries for a long time for the moisture to escape. Soldiers carried these biscuits as rations when they went on battles and campaigns. These biscuits were also eaten after soaking them in posca or stew.
Apart from the usual white and red wine, there was yet another type of wine that the Romans drank. It was the spiced wine, also called Conditum Paradoxum. The spiced wine was quite popular in Rome and also tasted sweet as it was mixed with a whole lot of spices like pepper, honey, saffron and dates. This drink was probably consumed in the winter months as the spices lent it heat. Though, not many records prove that the spiced wine was drunk by ancient Romans, but a few recipes retrieved from ruins tell us about their existence.
Roman foods were famous not only because they included lots of meats, fruits and veggies, but also had medicinal benefits. One such food was a soup made from beetroot. It was called borscht that aided in digestion. Soups formed an essential part of any Roman diet as during ancient times, drinking water usually resulted in stomach upsets, and these soups helped people get relief from their tummy ailments. Even today, you can grab a bowl of this beetroot soup in Eastern European countries where most restaurants and households serve it along with bread.
The Romans were skilled at the craft of cheese making, though they did not invent it themselves. They adopted the technology of cheese making from the Greeks who were pros and were producing cheese in large amounts for their cities. Soon, the Romans learnt the craft and technique well and made cheese a staple in their diet.
Some of the varieties of cheese we eat today were not born in the modern world. Instead, these were discovered by the ancient Romans. The most ancient form of cheese made in Rome was the pulled curd, also known as pasta filata. This had many versions like provolone and mozzarella. The ancient Roman cheese was rustic looking and had a bizarre shape. One can identify a cheese called Caciocavallo, a pear shaped cheese that dates back to the ancient times.
The Romans may not have been very ‘artsy’ about eating their fares, but we do know that they consumed a wide array of foods. If you get more info about other ancient Roman foods, feel free to ping us back.