This section is from the book "The Steward's Handbook And Guide To Party Catering", by Jessup Whitehead. Also available from Amazon: Larousse Gastronomique.
There is a growing desire among proprietors and stewards, who endeavor to set the best tables, to adopt the punch, which appears in the middle of the French course dinner bill, between entree and game. The example may be noted in several of the bills of fare shown in preceding articles, and the usually selected place for it is there seen, likewise. It is no longer always Roman punch, nor frozen punch, but after all these have had a run some stewards have taken to serving champagne cup, claret cup, Balaklava cup, and all the punches with fine names which can be found in the "barkeepers' guides." Some of these are poured from pitchers or decanters into the guest's glass that is already set upon the table. The various frozen punches - which are never quite solidly frozen - should be served in deep punch glasses, cup shaped, with handles.
There is a strong argument against the serving of punch gratis, however, in that it tends to lessen the sale of wine and bottled ale and beer, which some hotel keepers find a source of profit equal at least to the cigar stand, which in many houses is sufficient to pay the rent. It is argued that to give the diner a glass of rum punch with his dinner takes away his desire to order anything from the bar, and where the addition of wine to the dinner is offered as an advertisement, to introduce a sorbet or punch would be injudicious.