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spruce beer

a fermented beverage made with spruce leaves and twigs, or an extract from them.
Origin of spruce beer
1490-1500 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for spruce-beer
Historical Examples
  • Barrels of cider and spruce-beer are running freely into the wooden canteens of the soldiers.

    Old News Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • spruce-beer is made from the young shoots of the American Black Spruce.

    Botany for Ladies Jane Loudon
  • The spruce-beer of America is generally made from the young shoots of this tree.

  • In two minutes, however, he relented in his own favour; and muttering something about spruce-beer, walked off.

    Emma Jane Austen
  • On this last signal, a whole cloud of spruce-beer sellers started fiercely from under the piazzas.

    Tom Cringle's Log Michael Scott
  • At Washington we dined, and I drank some spruce-beer (for the first time in my life), and I found myself very unwell from it.

British Dictionary definitions for spruce-beer

spruce beer

an alcoholic drink made of fermented molasses flavoured with spruce twigs and cones
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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