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Cocktails: How To Make Them

Livermore & Knight Co


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Scarce and exquisite first edition of this miniature nineteenth-century cocktail recipe book of perennial classics, forgotten masterpieces and lost horrors of the drink-mixing arts, bound in San Francisco by two women artists.

  • Providence, RI: Livermore & Knight Co, (1898).
  • 39, [1] pages.
  • Bound in brown suede with decorative Arts & Crafts rooster image over cardstock boards, with binder's stamp on back cover.

"A bottled cocktail might be likened unto a depot sandwich — neither are fit for use except in case of necessity."

The purpose of this brief and lovely book is "to give the rules for the mixing of simple and well-known cocktails," which it does in a fashion guaranteed to enrage James Bond and all his followers: a cocktail should always be "stirred with a spoon, and sufficient ice should be used so that when the drink is served the melting of the ice will cause the drink to be at least one-third water." As for the drinks themselves, many are still classics (the martini, the champagne cocktail, the Manhattan, the Rob Roy), while others are easily recognizable under unfamiliar names or altered proportions attributable to the era's now-unfashionable fondness for glasses of vermouth over ice and liberal handfuls of sugar cubes.

Frank D. Livermore & Richard D. Knight of Providence, Rhode Island, were specialty printers who issued several other miniature books on food and drink (The Tiny Book of Sandwiches, etc.), while the binders of this copy, Lillian O'Hara and Grace G. Livermore of San Francisco, were successful artists whose primary field was interior design and whose first studio was destroyed in the 1906 earthquake. The relationship between Livermore & Livermore, if any, could not be determined.

Rare, OCLC locates just three holdings. An evocative early US mixology text, in a unique contemporary binding.

Condition Report

Star iconVery Good
Like New

Small matching binder's label to rear pastedown (O'Hara & Livermore Studio Applied Art, San Francisco).

Darkened spots to back cover and moderate general edgewear.


Height: 3 inches / 7.62 cm
Width: 4 inches / 10.16 cm




Cookery, Americana, Fine bindings, Manuals

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