In the 1800s, menus were more than just inventories of food, they were an integral part of eating out, a marketing tool, souvenir and cultural anachronism. Menus were newsworthy collector’s items and at least one accumulator, Miss Frank E. Buttolph and her 14,500 menus, was featured in The New York Times in 1906.
A charming buffet of 392 pages, Menu Design in America 1850-1985 serves up a golden age of menus. The book holds more than 800 examples of vintage graphic art and design. Authors John Mariani, Esquire magazine’s food and travel columnist, and art critic Steven Heller offer readers a history of American gourmandism with this volume. taschen.com