Martini Diaries, 1997, Leslie Ann Nash, Aerobleu Club. Book with Aluminum Slip Cover. First Edition, First Printing. Fascinating and entertaining book discovered by the writer Alston Chase and elaborately published by Chronicle Books, Inc., San Francisco. Mash was the manager of the jazz nightclub Aerobleu in Paris during the 1940s. The book is a compilation of of anecdotes, quotations, and martini recipes collected by Nash during her time at Aerobleu. Copyrighted by Less than Seven, Inc., Chronicle published her note and recipes as part of a large-scale promotion of Aerobleu-themed items. The book’s hard cover is heavily textured brown fabric covered boards, and the text is held in place with an aluminum frame held in place at the top of the book with two removable screws. The book measures 3 1/4″ wide by 10 1/8″ high. The pages are printed on “parchment” and feature elegant illustrations of various martinis. The book is in as-if-new condition.
For students of 1940s history or students of jazz or students of martinis, this book is a source of (possibly fictional) quotations from people like Janet Flanner, Ingrid Bergman, Art Buchwald, P. G. Wodehouse, Dorothy Parker (“Three Highballs, and I think I’m St. Francis of Assisi,”) F. Scott Fitzgerald, Noel Coward, Pablo Picasso, George Jean Nathan (“I drink to make other people interesting”,) Ernest Hemingway, and George Orwell. The format of Martini Diaries is martini recipe followed by ancedote or story about the person the drink was made for. For example the “Josephine’s Will She or Won’t She Martini” involves singer Josephine Baker.