Street Glassware

Walking the dog the other morning, I noticed someone had put out a box of glassware on the sidewalk. This is not uncommon, I guess people are cleaning their garages. Spring Cleaning.

I looked a little closer, and noticed it was cocktail glasses, mostly Martini Vs, but there were a few prizes in the box.

Nick and Nora

Wow, a true Nick and Nora size Martini Glass! Also, as a bonus, from Harolds Club in Reno.

On his twenty-fifth birthday, February 23, 1935, Harold Smith Sr. opened a tiny gambling club in Reno, Nevada. He had come to “the biggest little city” because California was cracking down on the carnival games his family ran in the Bay Area, and in 1931 Nevada had legalized gambling. Smith called his place “Harold’s Club”—with an apostrophe—and it was to become one of the most famous gambling place of its day and one of the first modern casinos. (The apostrophe later disappeared from the name.) The new club measured only 25 feet by 150 feet, and featured one roulette wheel. It lost money, and after a few months Harold’s father, Raymond I. “Pappy” Smith, arrived to turn things around as general manager. In the meantime Harold had been joined by his brother, Raymond A., who during the Great Depression could not find work in his banking profession.

Pappy soon developed a reputation for trying anything, including letting players bet on which hole a scampering field mouse would enter. The stunt gained Harolds its first national publicity. It was a prime example of Pappy’s genius for promotion that gave the club a major advantage over its rivals, which were dingy, unappealing places leery of advertising their business. The most famous promotion involved “Harolds Club or Bust” roadside billboards erected worldwide, and other advertising took the same adventurous tack, publicizing the club anytime and anywhere it could.

California Cocktail

I think Patrick Gavin Duffy calls this a California Cocktail Glass, it is seriously thick and heavy. Can’t wait to freeze this glass and pour in a Manhattan!

Tiny Coupe

This tiny coupe is kind of cool, with the yellow stem, though I’m not even sure if it will hold an ounce.

Larger Coupe

This larger classic coupe is better, with its fancy stem.

Gin Fizz Glass

Awesome, a Gin Fizz, aka Irish Coffee, glass! I actually wanted to track one of these down during the “Fizz” section of the Savoy Stomp, but it proved elusive, unless you wanted to spend a lot of money for one branded with Buena Vista. I prefer “Harolds”.

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