BLT Cookbook (2003); Cocktails of the Ritz Paris (2003)

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Wed Jun 18 00:59:01 UTC 2003

by Michele Anna Jordan
New York: William Morrow
150 pages, hardcover, $14.95

   Our favorite sandwich?
   Becky Marcuri's SANDWICHES THAT YOU WILL LIKE states "the BLT is the second most popular sandwich in the United States (ham is number one)."  Hamburgers and hot dogs don't count?
   Mercuri's book states that "BLT" is "diner lingo long ago."  That's fine for her book.  But this is, I believe, the _only_ book dedicated solely to the BLT.  The history given here is ZERO.
   I've covered BLT-type letter variations (such as PLT, BLAT, both surprisingly not here).  This book has a few of them, but not many.  It just isn't a good book.  Get your BLT recipes on the internet, for free.
   As I've said before, Burt Lesson Taylor (BLT) was a famous columnist for the CHICAGO TRIBUNE.  He might even have invented the word "columnist"--he wrote a column each day.  I'll look at the TRIBUNE's BLTs when the digitization project finishes soon.

Pg. 52:  The FTBBLT: The Full-Tilt Boogie BLT

Pg. 54:  The SBAT  (Sourdough Bread, Avocado, Tomato--ed.)

Pg. 56:  The PAT  (Pancetta, Aioli, Tomato.  I gotta add Salami and make a "PSAT" for Arnold Zwicky--ed.)

Pg. 59:  The BSLT  (Basil, Salmon--ed.)

Pg. 70:  The SSLT  (Salmon Skin--ed.)

Pg. 74:  The ZLT  (Zucchini--ed.)

Pg. 76:  The VLT  (Vegetarian--ed.)

Pg. 82:  Pita BCLT  (Crabmeat--ed.)

by Colin Peter Field
New York: Simon & Schuster
144 pages, harcover, $19.95
2003 (French translation copyright 2001)

   Some drink etymology is here.  At least he tries.

Pg. 3:  A big problem for the cocktail genealogist is the amount of apocryphal stories put about by famous bars that claim to be the birthplace of certain cocktails.  As so often happens with myths, if they get repeated often enough, they acquire factual status, even in the eyes of the people who propagated them in the first place!

Pg. 8:  I can't resist adding that George Jessel, Toastmaster General of the United States, did announce quite fervently in the Smirnoff vodka campaign circa 1955 that it was he that invented the Bloody Mary!
(This "Bloody Mary" etymological discussion is bloody well better than the recent BLOODY MARY book, but still misses my Jessel citations--ed.)

Pg. 8:  However, let me offer you this extract from one of the most sought-after cocktail books in the (Pg. 10--ed.) world, _The Stork Club Bar Book_, written by Lucius Beebe and published in 1946:
   "The Sidecar was, to the best of the knowledge and belief of the author, invented by Frank, steward and senior barkeep of the celebrated Paris Ritz Bar during the golden age of the early twenties."

Pg. 11:  A certain Robert of the Embassy Club in London wrote in his 1922 book _Cocktails--How to Mix Them_ that the inventor of the Sidecar was a bartender named MacGarry working at the Bucks Club.

Pg. 50:  Manhattan (Attributed to Jenny Churchill, the mother of Sir Winston Churchill)
("Attributed," but not by many--ed.)

Pg. 66:  The Highland Cream took me six months to perfect in 1982.  It has become over the years one of my signature cocktails.

Pg. 66:  The Dry Martini--My Story
Every bartender has a theory about the world's most famous cocktail.  I feel that this is the true story.
(The BROOKLYN EAGLE "martini" is not here, of course.  Field credits the Martini-Henry Rifle, but I think his aim is off--ed.)

Cocktails that have been invented over the years in the Ritz Paris, the Cambon Bar
(usually known as the Ritz Paris Bar)

Pg. 134:
Blue Bird (Cambon Bar, Frank Meier, 1933)...
Nicky's Fizz (Cambon Bar, Frank Meier, 1923)...
Sea Pea (Cambon Bar, Frank Meier, 1933)...

Pg. 136:
Elegant (Cambon Bar, Frank Meier, 1933)...
N.C.R. (Cambon Bar, Frank Meier, 1933)...
Green Hat (Bar Cambon, 1933)...

Pg. 137:
Corpse Reviver No2 (Cambon Bar, Frank Meier, circa 1926)
   Mr. Newman, Head Bartender of the Grand Hotel, one of the older cocktail bars in Paris, had already noted a Corpse Reviver in 1909.

Pg. 137:
Mimosa (Frank Meier, 1925, apparently)
   I have read in a few books that we actually invented the Mimosa in 1925 at the RItz Paris.  However, in Frank Meier's book of 1933 he cites the Mimosa or Champagne Orange and does not sign it himself.  Can it be safe to assume that the Ritz Paris did not invent this cocktail?  Did Frank forget to sign his creation?
(The revised OED has "1936 F. MEIER _Artistry of Mixing Drinks_"--ed.)

Pg. 137:
Fog Horn (Cambon Bar, 1933)

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