Robinsons Barley Water in Cans

1991 commercial for Robinsons Barley Water in Cans!!

Barley water, usually flavoured with lemon or other fruit, is a popular British soft drink. It can be made by boiling washed pearl barley, straining, then pouring the hot water over the rind and/or pulp of the fruit, and adding fruit juice and sugar to taste. The rind may also be boiled with the barley.

Drinking boiled barley in water, strained or not, is an ancient practice. Barley water has been used as a first baby food, before feeding with barley mush. It is also used to treat cystitis. In Mexico drinks called aguas frescas are made by street vendors using similar methods. Roasted barley tea is a popular traditional Asian equivalent.

In Britain, Robinsons Lemon Barley Water, now a Britvic brand, is popular with parents and children alike. It is sold in bottles of one litre of concentrate, which is usually diluted with three to five parts cold water.

Lemon Barley Water has a long association with Wimbledon, being still the official drink supplied to players on the court.

The Labour politician Josiah Wedgwood is said to have staged a filibuster in Parliament, sustaining himself with barley water and chocolate, in 1913.

Robinsons Barley Water was originally sold in glass bottles but this was changed to plastic bottles a few years ago.

In the film Mary Poppins one of the children’s prerequisites of being their nanny is that they must not smell of barley water.

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