I've posted a version of this on the Chicago board, so apologies in advance if this is repetitive.
Anyone else out there with a thing for old menu's? I am fascinated with them, not just for the graphics, but for the insight for what people ate over time. For instance, nearly every menu pre-1965 includes a listing for relishes. Did people really say, I'll have the filet, medium rare and also the celery hearts? And when did the relishes come out, with drinks, with appetizers, with the meal?
Another interesting item, the way things were priced. The club dinner at Keen's allowed for one of a group of starters. Included were grapefruit juice, cantaloupe, (and similiar items), crab meat cocktail, and shrimp cocktail. Was there a time when fruit was the same price as crab and shrimp?
Of course there are all those things that people never eat any more like sweetbreads, kidneys, shad roe, chicken ala king, and rarebits (Keen's offered five!)
So, I have an ample if not obsessive collection. I have to say however, it sorely lacks in Chicago places. I do have menu's from all over the world, especially resturants of a certain haute class. Lots of Simpsons-on-the-Strand, Maxim de Paris (not the chicago version), Lucas Carton, Grand Velour. I would be more than happy to trade some of these for Chicago, Las Vegas, New Orleans or South Florida related stuff. Also, tips on menu sources (non-ebay) would be appreciated. As I have also said, I would be willing to auction off in support of chowhound.
Other things that may interest: 2 Keens Chophouse (I'd trade one); Schrafft's and Luchow and Lindy's; like a gazillion menu's from Baltimore's Miller's Brothers, "The Place to Eat". For those who believe that all roads lead to Rome, I have a Ristorante Alfredo, The Real King of Fettucine"; for cruise fans, a few from high end lines like the SS France and the QEII; for Simon and Howler, a 1947 menu from Veeraswamy's of Regent and Swallow streets, London; also, from London, many many menu's from Quaglino's; for old time visitors to Florida, a menu from Jim McCovey's Old South Bar-B-Q Ranch with branches in Clewiston, Hialeah, Ft. Meyers, Old Town (on the bank of the Suwanne River) and Orlando. Again, I am interested in trading.
Look forward to hearing of similiar interests