Archive for July, 2009

M.S. Rau hosts Martin Miller’s Gin Blogger’s Reception

July 22nd, 2009 | posted by Bill Rau

The 7th Annual Tales of the Cocktail experience recently brought “spirited” enthusiasts to New Orleans for libations and camaraderie. On July 7th, M.S. Rau Antiques played host for a reception put on by Martin Miller’s Gin for Internet bloggers, where web diarists from across the country gathered to catch up, sip cocktails and enjoy our wine & spirit collection. Martin Miller’s Gin is celebrating their 10-year anniversary of distilling the world’s first super premium gin, and Martin Miller himself was onsite to discuss his story and passion for making a great gin.

Jon Santer serves Palin's Christmas Punch at the event.

Jon Santer serves Palin’s Christmas Punch at the event.

M.S. Rau Antiques proved to be the perfect setting for this event, as our stunning collection of wine & spirits antiques wowed the crowd. Our 1930’s Deco “Portable Bar” set was the hit of the night. Also attracting much attention was this silverplate monoplane cocktail set, which features everything needed to craft a delectable libation, including a shaker with strainer, a large inner flask, two hip flasks, 4 cups, a spoon with olive fork, a cork screw and a funnel. This particular model is now one of the rarest and most desirable items among collectors of distinguished cocktail memorabilia, ranking as one of the finest shakers ever created. Another favorite was an 1870’s Baccarat crystal cavé liqueur housed in a bronze-mounted, ebonized rosewood chest inlaid with ivory, tortoiseshell, brass and enamel. The set comprises three crystal decanters and 12 cordials all trimmed in gold.

29-1876_17 29-1876_51

This fantastic Art Deco cocktail set comes apart to reveal a shaker, strainer, large inner flask, two hip flasks,
4 cups, a spoon, a corkscrew and a funnel.

Christmas in July! Our Latest Container Has Arrived

July 13th, 2009 | posted by Bill Rau

A fantastic inlaid and bronze mounted table by French ebeniste Charles-Guillaume Diehl

It’s always an exciting day for us when our container finally arrives from Europe…it’s like Christmas in July! The 40-foot container arrived last week and our entire staff gathered at the gallery just before dawn to begin the task of unloading the treasures from the truck. Just arriving in the French Quarter in the early morning light is magical…a light fog usually hangs over Jackson Square and all is quiet. You can almost imagine that you’ve stepped back in time…until you reach the gallery where it’s organized chaos as we all scramble to unpack (very carefully) literally dozens and dozens of boxes. The fun part is that you never know what each box might hold…you just know it will be something extraordinary and special.

We’re now busy photographing and preparing the pieces to go on our website, so please keep checking back with us. We’ll be adding pieces daily. The fasted way to see our latest pieces is to visit the Recent Acquisitions section of our site where you’ll find the latest gallery additions. Click on “Recent Acquisitions” on the navigation bar at the top of any web page on the site.

There were so many great things on the container, it would be difficult to list them all, but a few of the highlights are:

• A fantastic Charles-Guillaume Diehl center table, beautifully embellished and in superb condition;
• An amazing German Maximillian Field Armour for both man and horse, complete with saddle and all mounted on a modern life-size model of a horse and rider;
• A superb old Sheffield silver epergne with a stag hunt motif;
• A fine George I walnut bureau cabinet of the highest order.

These are just four of the many, many wonderful pieces we’ve received. If you would like more information about the container, please call us toll free at 866-349-0705 and one of our sales consultants will be happy to discuss any of the pieces that you may find interesting.

We thought we’d have a little fun with the container, so we’ve posed one simple (o.k. not so simple) question to our sales team: What is your favorite piece from the container and why? With so many great things to choose from, it is a rather tough question. We hope you enjoy their answers. Stay tuned…you can read the answers in their individual blogs which they will be posting in the next couple of days. We’d like to hear your stories as well. Do have a story about a special piece you uncovered on a trip or on when you were out antiquing? We’d love to hear it! Send them to us at or just respond to one of the blogs.

“Shaken, not stirred!”

July 13th, 2009 | posted by Susan Lapene
Set on casters, this bar was easily rolled out for quick service and can be accessed from either side.

Set on casters, this bar was easily rolled out for quick service and can be accessed from either side.

When I saw the Art Deco Ship’s bar come out of the container truck, my first thought was of Bond, James Bond.  In my mind’s eye, I could see James Bond, maneuvering through a luxury liner’s crowded, smoky casino.  Bond, sleek and polished, quaffed, beyond handsome and of course wearing a perfect tuxedo.  Bond’s eyes suddenly lock on an exquisite red haired, buxom woman nearby and her eyes lock on him.  She nods and raises her glass to him.   He nods back and smiles seductively.   He looks back to the bartender standing behind an incredibly lacqured walnut art deco bar with chrome trim and glass top.  It is as sleek and polished as he is.  He orders.

A dry martini,” he said. “One. In a deep champagne goblet.”

“Oui, monsieur”, replies the bartender.

“Just a moment,” he glances back to the voluptuous red head who stares back at him intently;  her lips wet.  “Three measures of Gordon’s, one of vodka, half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it very well until it’s ice-cold, then add a large thin slice of lemon-peel. Got it?”

(Casino Royale (1953), chapter 7, by Ian Fleming.)

As Bond makes his way over to his awaiting beauty, he looks back over his shoulder at the bar and thinks.  “Love the bar.  Make a mental note to talk to the Captain about buying it; would be great for the London office.”

Ok, so I have an imagination!