Cocktail Hour

Ontario’s provincial liquor retailer, the LCBO, currently has a promotion centred on cocktails (that’s how we spell “centered” in Ontario).  As you can see from the cover of the accompanying print piece the organization is playing up the glamorous connotation of these libations by connecting them with formal attire.

I’m not sure how many people these days actually don tuxedos and cocktail dresses to gather for preprandial drinks but the romantic association endures nonetheless.  Perhaps it’s because a cocktail party is such a fun way to play grownup.  The simple gesture of guests dressing up and hosts serving garnished concoctions makes an evening much more special than just throwing back a few beers with friends yet much more relaxed than a formal dinner party.   And once participants get into the spirit of looking their best it is only natural for guys to imagine themselves sporting a tuxedo to radiate the maturity, class, and style associated with the cocktail’s heyday back in the ‘30s, ‘40s and ‘50s.

Bottoms up!

1963 Hollywood cocktail party featured in "Esquire" magazine.


  1. omschiefslr

    Regarding cocktails in Ontario… A couple years ago, I attended a meeting at the Royal York Hotel in Toronto. It is a beautiful property and the service was far superior to the service in American hotels. Coctailing…. I noticed the bartender using a very small jigger (larger than a thimble for sure).

    I am suspecting the government has mandated that drinks sold at bars in Canada be less than an ounce per shot? It took a few vodka cranberries to feel the effect!

    Best as always, Ned

    1. Peter Marshall

      As far as I know shot sizes are at the discretion of the individual establishments and 1.5 oz is typical. Perhaps the hosts of your meeting asked the hotel to minimize the alcohol consumption to keep down costs!

      By the way, I am a huge fan of Canada’s historic railway hotels (see my related web site) and tend to drop by the Royal York’s Library Bar after every black-tie event I attend in town. If you ever get a chance check out the others (now managed by Fairmont): Lake Louise, Jasper Park Lodge and Banff Springs in the Alberta Rockies, Hotel Vancouver, Empress Hotel in Victoria, Chateau Laurier in Ottawa, and Chateau Frontenac in Quebec among others.

  2. Adam Williamson

    the Fairmont Lake Louise is just stunning.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *