1925 Drinks Long & Short by Nina Toye and A H Adair



I SHOULD state here, now, without any further delay, and emphatically,that,as a wine drinker,and a gourmet, I disapprove of cocktails. I specially disapprove of the English concoctions called (for no reason whatsoever) cocktails, and served two minutes before dinner. The cocktail habit,as generally practised in England, is a vice—in the same way that the American baseball is a form of sadism or of masochism—unless it be a mortification. It does not in the least correspond to the elegant drinking of various mixtures in Parisian bars, or to the even more charming cocktail parties in private houses. It is then six or seven o'clock, and of course, you would not dream of dining before nine. But the idea of swallowing a strong cocktail just before your soup, then expectir^g to appreciate and enjoy good food and noble wines amounts to sheer insanity. How much saner,for instance,is my friend Nicole, who drinks cocktails at night, between dances. And what champagne ever tasted better than that pint of Clicquot, bought and drunk hurriedly, at breakfast time, during a ride in occupied Flanders? Yet,one can disapprove and appreciate at the same time. And the. poetic charm of the cocktail is so powerful, its appearance so perversely fascinating, its perfume so complex, its effect so subtle that one cannot help, not only yielding to so many attractions, but also being, at times,and for reasons almost purely literary, moved,if not to tears, at least to exaltation.


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