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Martini Parade, Manson's Chicago 1945 Cocktail Art
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Martini Parade, Manson's Chicago 1945


Probably the most iconic cocktail in the world, the martini is celebrated in this witty image from Manson's restaurant in Chicago in 1945. Manson's billed itself as Your Downtown Dining Room. They also had an intriguingly named Aviary Cocktail Lounge.

A humorous take on street parades popular in America during the summer months, the martini is awarded First Prize in the Cocktail Parade and is carried atop a flower-strewn vehicle like a beauty queen.

No-one knows exactly when the martini was invented. There are claims that it was concocted by a barman during the California Gold Rush and a "martinez" was listed in Jerry Thomas's 1887 bartending manual.

There is a counter-claim that the martini was invented by a barman called Martini di Arma di Taggia in New York in 1911.

The satirist H L Mencken is said to have called the martini "the only American invention as perfect as the sonnet." Shaken or stirred, with an olive or a twist, the martini remains at the top of the cocktail parade.

Courtesy Private Collection.

Each print is accompanied by a copy of the interior menu where available.

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