A Cocktail Hath the Soul of Wit
“Cocktail-drinking has a peculiar charm of its own which lifts it above drinking as otherwise practised. Your confirmed cocktail-drinker is not to be confused with the ordinary sot. He is a true artist. With what exquisite feeling will he graduate his cups, from the gentle “smile” of early morn to the potent “smash ” of night. The analytic skill of a chemist marks his swift and unerring detection of the very faintest dissonance in the harmony of the ingredients that compose his beverage. He has an antidote to dispel, a tonic to induce every mood and humor that man knows. Endless variety rewards a single-hearted devotion to cocktails; whilst the refinement and artistic spirit that may be displayed in such an attachment, redeem it from intemperance. It becomes an art. It is drinking etherealized, rescued from vulgar appetite and brutality, purified of its low origin and ennobled. A cocktail hath the soul of wit, it is brief. It is a jest, a bon-mot, happy thought, a gibe, a word of sympathy, a tear, an inspiration, a short prayer. A list of your experienced cocktail-drinker’s potations for the day forms a complete picture, fraught with every nuance of delicate shading.” The Living Age, Volume 155, 1882.