Which is your favourite shaker and why?
The Lurelle Guild and the Revere Manhattan are probably my favourites. The two large lighthouse shakers and even the two smaller lighthouse shakers are probably my rarest.
And do you have one with a personal story?
The first one I found in an antique store is the one that is personally closest to my heart. It is the one with a brass top and Czechoslovakian in origin.
Is there still a cocktail shaker or bar item you have heard about but never seen? Something like the Holy Grail of Shakers?
A Blue lady’s leg shaker by West Virginia Specialty Glass. Much talk about it and a few who claim to have seen one. Personally I don’t think that they exist unless one was made as a prototype.
What do you think about modern bar design; ie; the Flip Top shaker by Metrokane?
I’m not a big fan; it is really quite cheap looking and not much fun to use. It’s easy to clean but no exciting presentation.
Do you think reproducing vintage shakers is a good idea?
I think it is good as long as buyers and sellers both know the difference. Many ebay sellers list them as vintage and even when I or other collectors email them the truth they refuse to change the description. Most are honest though. I think it is good because it helps people have the fun of using what vintage barware might have looked like that may be more within their budgets and I also think people get hooked and start looking for real vintage barware.
What are your future projects and plans?
As I mentioned earlier I am very excited about finishing my den, bar area to be able to display many more of my shakers.
I have been a panelist the last two years at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans. www.MOTAC.com This year it was held at The Museum of the American Cocktail and I was priviledged to be with the King, Steven Visakay and another wonderful celebrity friend, Jimbo “Martini“ Walker. There were many people from all over the world at our seminar and many more at “The Tales“ It was awesome and I would encourage everyone to attend.
Can you tell us a few homepages where we can find further information about shakers and bar ware?
First you have to find the book Vintage Barware by Steve Visakay. It’s out of print but find it on eBay or Amazon.
Websites; There are so many that I find exciting, I wish that I could list them all.
One of the greatest is Gary and Joy Grahams site at www.thejazzage.com
and of course there’s mine www.CocktailShakers.com
There are lots of sights out there. You have to check out my compatriot Jimbo Walker’s Blog http://shaken-stirred.blogspot.com
Lots of others that people and sites that collect or sell, great people!
Joe Keeper; Great store for old and new bar items in Los Angeles http://www.barkeepersilverlake.com
Sven Almenning; Bar consultant and collector
Some other great resources;
Sorry for anyone I missed.
Dear Mark, thank you for this great interview.
Readers: Mark´s homepage www.CocktailShakers.com is a MUST for every collector. Visit it!!!