Don't forget the stillroom
Posted by Woodhouse on November 25, 1997 at 16:38:40:
In response to The Regency Pantry, written by P. Bingham on November 13, 1997 at 04:43:55
I am new to the board and couldn't resist revisiting this now-old issue. Please excuse me for entering belatedly.
Many manor houses in the nineteenth century also kept what they termed the stillroom, just off the kitchen. In this room they stored preserves, pickles and sometimes liquor. They also might prepare tea trays there. The term originated as 'distillery', i.e., fermentation. It is a primarily British term which originated in the eighteenth century, and is sometimes confused with pantry.
By the by, I'm an old Virginia gal and I loved the story about servants whistling. Unfortunately, it is true. Regarding the term butler's pantry, I have no hard data on this, but I always understood that this was more a southern-American term than a UK term.
The bulter's pantries I recall from childhood were always service rooms, sometimes little more than hallway cubboards, which connected the kitchen to the diningroom in a house which did not have its kitchen in another building. No food was kept in a butler's pantry. Rather, it was used for the storage of the expensive china and silver.
I do know that in most nineteenth century English households, when the house was staffed with both butler and housekeeper, the bulter usually retained the keys to the china, the silver, the wine cellar and the liquor. The housekeeper kept most everything else. This makes me think that a butler's pantry in the UK is the same as a butler's pantry in the south US, but I'm not sure.
Hope this helps, but it is probably just confusing . . .
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