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Chris Amirault

Vintage Cocktail Glasses

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The perfect two fingered grip so you can drink whilst holding out your pinky, no? :rolleyes:


Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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About the glasses labeled by specific drink--I wonder if region could matter. In other words, when they were produced, could they have been produced in an area where Bourbon was still considered a southern drink? I sort of doubt this, but I don't really know the history of Bourbon's diffusion throughout the states.

Chris


"What's more, I believe it's a cook's moral obligation to add more butter given the chance."

Michael Ruhlman,
Ratio: The Simple Codes Behind Everyday Cooking

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The key feature for these last three glasses -- and one that's now often missing -- is the perfect, tapered grip. I especially like that double bump on Kim's first set.

I agree. With a smooth, modern glass, half the time I end up just holding it from the base, or saying "screw it" and grabbing it around the drink well, warming be damned. It's nice to have a delineation between the drink well and the stem. It has good function, and I think it adds to the class of the glass..


"...which usually means underflavored, undersalted modern French cooking hidden under edible flowers and Mexican fruits."

- Jeffrey Steingarten, in reference to "California Cuisine".

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All right, next up: the Nick and Nora question. (No, not the "Why have you been obsessed with Myrna Loy for three decades, Chris?" question.) Here are two examples I offer for discussion.

First, a 5 oz crystal with a long, relatively slim stem:

4309811377_079d4f0378.jpg

Next, a squat 3 oz glass:

4284792039_1c7cc5fb93.jpg

These have been among the hardest glasses for me to find, not least because I'm not sure what they are. What, exactly, makes a Nick and Nora glass a Nick and Nora glass? I mean, Powell and Loy weren't squat, for starters.


Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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As far as I know it's the rounded shape.

That may be part of it, but I think the size is also a factor, i.e., a glass that fits the smaller proportions of most classic cocktail recipes, rather than the 6oz+ monstrosities that we see so much of today. Sorry for the grainy iPhone photo (no flash), but here is a picture of what The Tar Pit Bar calls their 'Nick & Nora' glass (and the drink, by the way, was an absolutely lovely Fitty Fitty).

22354_232384052273_557902273_3779728_2013659_n.jpg


"Martinis should always be stirred, not shaken, so that the molecules lie sensuously one on top of the other." - W. Somerset Maugham

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Yes, but WHY is that considered the "Nick and Nora" glass?? Is that the glass that was used for cocktal imbibing in the films? What's the implication/reference? Sadly, I haven't seen one of those films in recent enough memory to comment on whether that is what is being referred to. Surely someone in this crowd has a better reference point.


Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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That may be part of it, but I think the size is also a factor, i.e., a glass that fits the smaller proportions of most classic cocktail recipes, rather than the 6oz+ monstrosities that we see so much of today. Sorry for the grainy iPhone photo (no flash), but here is a picture of what The Tar Pit Bar calls their 'Nick & Nora' glass (and the drink, by the way, was an absolutely lovely Fitty Fitty).

Yeah, while 6 oz isn't large for a V-shaped cocktail glass, a 2-3 oz cocktail would look way too small in a 6 oz Nick and Nora-style glass. As for why it's called that, I have no idea--I've never seen the movies, only read the book (excellent book). This very thread is already on the first page of results for a Google search of "nick and nora glass" so I don't think the internet will be much help there!


Edited by Dorek (log)

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Yes, but WHY is that considered the "Nick and Nora" glass?? Is that the glass that was used for cocktal imbibing in the films? What's the implication/reference? Sadly, I haven't seen one of those films in recent enough memory to comment on whether that is what is being referred to. Surely someone in this crowd has a better reference point.

I can only guess that someone looked at (or wanted) a glass similar to the ones you see in the movies and the name stuck. Thus far, I've had no luck trying to find out where the term was first used. The attached picture is a choice example of the kind of glass we're talking about (and because of this scene, I shook my martinis to a waltz beat for many years, until I finally came to the conclusion that stirring is better).

ThinManMartini.jpg


"Martinis should always be stirred, not shaken, so that the molecules lie sensuously one on top of the other." - W. Somerset Maugham

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Next up, the glass I refer to as the curlicue:

4284789839_a9f7eaeb50.jpg

4284790045_7d67e64414_o.jpg

It's a squat 5 oz class with a really terrific design etched into it. I'm not sure if "etched" is the right word, but it's not cut the way that, say, these bamboo guys are cut:

4284789645_361007a177.jpg

Does anyone have a guess at the era of these curlicue glasses, or a sense of the method used to do that complex etching?


Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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I'll have to pull some of my glass books out of storage as I don't recognize the pattern on the top glass but as I recall it is similar to a Fostoria pattern.

Cambridge, Fostoria and Heisey were just three of the hundreds of American glassmakers who turned out elegant (and fairly expensive) crystal during the first half of the last century and a smaller output from Steuben. Heisey alone produced hundreds of patterns some pressed glass but some were also hand engraved or cut.

Even more expensive were the imports from Kosta Boda, Orrefors, Lalique, Waterford, Wedgwood and Baccarat.

The bottom glass is clearly engraved using a copper wheel lathe. It's possible the top one is also hand engraved but it might also be acid etched but the pattern lines look as if they were designed to have more texture than usual with copper wheel engraving.

I did engraving in glass with diamond burrs for many years, I worked on just about every level of glass and crystal up to and including Baccarat and custom blown pieces. It's all done freehand, as is copper wheel, where acid etching is done with a wax pattern applied to the glass which is then etched wherever the wax doesn't cover the glass.

You can also send a photo of a glass (or whatever) to Replacements

http://www.replacements.com/crystal/manu/h.htm

click on "Info" and you will see where to email a picture to their pattern identification service.


"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Andiesenji, you are my heroine! Yet another amazing factoid about you is that you know how to hand etch glassware. Why does this not surprise me? You are truly a renaissance woman. :wub:

Chris, that curlique glass is just lovely! I suspect the rough textural element of the pattern does indeed imply some sort of chemical process, as Andie suggests. Most other etchings don't have that sort of surface texture.

Even more expensive were the imports from Kosta Boda, Orrefors, Lalique, Waterford, Wedgwood and Baccarat...

I love love love antique glassware of all sorts. It's a problem. And I have expensive taste I can't possibly keep up with, which only makes it worse. I suspect that growing up in my mother's house that was filled with porcelain and glass tchotchkes of every stripe including cut glass bowls/vases/ashtrays/candy dishes, etched stemware of all description, glass animals and all manner of mirrors of various sizes and levels of elaborate decoration caused at least some of that love to rub off on me. I still treasure many of the glasses and things my mother left me. I developed a serious jones to own any and all of the William Yeoward stemware and/or barware when it was used to style a magazine shoot I worked on for a former restaurant employer. While they're reproductions of older discontinued antique patterns, they're so stunningly beautiful it doesn't even matter. I covet this stuff in the Biblical sense. It is a sin just how much I wish I could afford it. I have dreams of setting a gloriously gorgeous table with it. Or just having it live in the cabinets with my other things. A full setting of Yeoward stemware or barware might be one of the first things Id treat myself to upon winning the Powerball lottery. Just because I could. :smile:


Edited by KatieLoeb (log)

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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Here is one of my most popular non doggy designs and another favorite was a series of Egyptian designs. Because I was in the dog fancy, that was my major business but I also did a lot of Arabian horses, including 36 Baccarat goblets with 36 different Arabian heads that I had to ship to Abu Dhabi. Oh Joy! and that's one of the reasons I have severe arthritis in my right hand.

Peacock-engraving.jpg

This is on a flat disc of German water white glass (high lead content) but this peacock was easy to do on a curved surface. Because they are all engraved freehand, no two were ever exactly alike.


"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Here are a couple of pictures of a set of cocktail glasses my wife found at an antiques/oddities shop here in Houston. Each one holds 3 ounces to the brim, which makes them the perfect size for the classic and vintage cocktails I'm learning to love (thanks to Erik Ellestad and the Savoy Stomping crew!). I don't think they're very old or very rare, but we enjoy them quite a bit. Incidentally, we found a picture of a very similar glass in Ted Haigh's Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails (Deluxe Edition) on page 262.

Does anyone recognize these or know anything more about them?

gallery_66842_6834_2160.jpg

gallery_66842_6834_3246.jpg


Jeff Fox

Aspiring Cocktailian

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They're fantastic. Glass or crystal? And how many ounces?

Glass, as far as I can tell. One thing I've seen in a few of them is a very tiny air bubble in the glass matrix. That suggests to me that they didn't cost much to produce, but I could be wrong.

They hold 3 ounces with just a hair of space left, which helps keep me from spilling Sidecars all over my wife when I hand them to her.


Jeff Fox

Aspiring Cocktailian

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Just thought I'd share an interesting tidbit. Due to a supply problem at the new bar where I'm working, we've been using the 5 oz coupes in the middle of this photo:

4285535864_2f434bdaea.jpg

The shape, size, and step grip are outstanding. You can understand why, of all the vintage cocktail glasses I've gotten at thrift stores, I'd have dozens more of those than of any other kind. They rock.


Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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All right, next up: the Nick and Nora question. (No, not the "Why have you been obsessed with Myrna Loy for three decades, Chris?" question.) Here are two examples I offer for discussion.

First, a 5 oz crystal with a long, relatively slim stem:

4309811377_079d4f0378.jpg

Next, a squat 3 oz glass:

4284792039_1c7cc5fb93.jpg

These have been among the hardest glasses for me to find, not least because I'm not sure what they are. What, exactly, makes a Nick and Nora glass a Nick and Nora glass? I mean, Powell and Loy weren't squat, for starters.

i got my nick and nora glasses here in NYC on the UWS.

http://www.pourwines.com/istar.asp?a=6&id=915!MIN

not cheap at $9 a glass but it's the only place i've ever seen them in NYC.

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The bottom glass is clearly engraved using a copper wheel lathe. It's possible the top one is also hand engraved but it might also be acid etched but the pattern lines look as if they were designed to have more texture than usual with copper wheel engraving.

For acid etching the curliques would they coat the glass in wax then scratch the pattern through it for the acid to etch? That would be scraffito (sp?) in the pottery world.


It's almost never bad to feed someone.

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Just thought I'd share an interesting tidbit. Due to a supply problem at the new bar where I'm working, we've been using the 5 oz coupes in the middle of this photo:

4285535864_2f434bdaea.jpg

The shape, size, and step grip are outstanding. You can understand why, of all the vintage cocktail glasses I've gotten at thrift stores, I'd have dozens more of those than of any other kind. They rock.

We were just gifted a couple of glasses very similar to those, albeit somewhat shallower (they hold just barely over 3 oz). They are just about the perfect glass in a classical sense, I really quite adore them. (Speaking of Vintage, can anyone help me pinpoint the age of that Noilly? It was not used to make this drink, the bottle is still sealed.)

260069863.jpg?AWSAccessKeyId=AKIAJF3XCCKACR3QDMOA&Expires=1300503161&Signature=P65j3EC2EjMC8zq8DqbImHIBJfk%3D

Also included were several of two different types of snifters (I really like the one in the center, which is dimpled around the outside) as well as what were described as Champagne Flutes, which I think might also make rather nice punch glasses (they can comfortably hold just under 4 oz).

IMG_5142.jpg


True rye and true bourbon wake delight like any great wine...dignify man as possessing a palate that responds to them and ennoble his soul as shimmering with the response.

DeVoto, The Hour

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Hi Texas Cocktail Geek

I recently joined eG, I realize this is an old post and you may have already learned this info. I have an online vintage store and I was researching cocktail glasses like the one you & your wife enjoy using. They are from Libbey Rock Sharpe pattern #3002 circa 1950. They are selling between $6.00-$8.00 each. I myself love vintage bar ware and have to have my drinks in the proper glass, I always want the pretty one. I do love a good side car too, this glass would be perfect! To me, everything tastes better in vintage glasses!

Bridget


Edited by Refined Vintage (log)

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Chris

I recently acquired the same "curlicue" champagne glasses. I have been trying to find out what I can. I have a vintage online store & I can't decide whether to keep them or sell them. This is a common problem for me as I love glassware, and entertaining/serving items, but how many do you really need? I will be sure to let you know when I find out who made them & when.


Refined Vintage offers only the finest eclectic collection of Retro, Mid Century and Vintage items to add beauty to your life.

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https://www.facebook.../refinedvintage

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