A Grand Old Tyme
It doesn't take much for us to find a reason to whip out a cocktail.
And this month we have the most perfect excuse: the anniversary of the first cocktail party-ever. T'was a mere 96 years ago when a superbly fashionable woman named Mrs. Julius S. Walsh invited a handful of her closest friends over for an hour of cocktails and conversation in her impeccable mansion on Lindell Boulevard in St. Louis. It was held on a Sunday at high noon. Folks arrived shortly after attending church or after a slow stroll along the avenue (in today's speak this is known as unabashed people watching). She hired a bartender who, dressed in a spanking white overcoat, whipped up cocktails on demand serving a host of beverages including the sazerac, manhattan, gin fizz, clover leaf, bourbon on the rocks and even a mint julep for a special attendee. This illustrious event became the toast of the town, inspiring a wave of similar events from coast to coast.
It is obvious that this singular event is the inspiration behind our namesake. But it is so much more than that. It was the first time that people moved the occasion of imbibing from small, secret social clubs to an openly social event for the sole purpose of drinking and conversing together. And in today's world of twitter and facebook, texting and snapchat, we can't imagine a better movement than bringing people together in real time, face to face and glass to glass to enjoy a moment of honest interaction. To revive the lost art of conversation; to exchange ideas together in flesh and blood- over a fantastic cocktail, of course. So this month, we hold our glasses high, and toast to our dear Clara: a fascinating woman who changed the way we imbibe forever. Her little soiree may not have ever been meant to do much more than pass a lazy Sunday afternoon. Whatever her goal, we are very pleased with the result. To you, Mrs. Walsh; May You Never Be Out Of Spirits!
Posted: May 24, 2013 | Permalink