"The romance of wines and liquors etiquette...recipes"
Oscar of the Waldorf
8 1/2" x 5 1/2"
Decorations by Henry Stahlut
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Oscar Tschirky (1866 in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland – November 6, 1950 in New Paltz, New York, USA) was maître d'hôtel of Delmonico's Restaurant and subsequently the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in Manhattan, New York, United States. He was widely known as "Oscar of the Waldorf" and produced a large cookbook (or at least had his name on it) despite not being a chef. He is also pictured on a relish bottle displayed in the lobby of the Waldorf-Astoria hotel along with other photos of him at the major events during his tenure as maître d'hôtel. He is known, moreover, as the creator of the Waldorf salad, and for aiding in the popularization of Thousand Island Dressing. Tschirky reputedly had a hand in the creation of Eggs Benedict, although differing accounts make this hard to confirm.
Tschirky had a farm in New Paltz where he hosted picnics for friends and family as well as other chefs. In later years the property was purchased by the Philantropique Society and was operated as a retirement home for chefs. It would later become open to the general public and was known as The Culinarians' Home.
Cornell University holds the Oscar Tschirky papers and his noted collection of menus (Cornell University School of Hotel Administration). Karl Schriftgiesser wrote a biography, Oscar of the Waldorf, that appears to be virtually an autobiography. Much recollection is devoted to the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel and its founder, George C. Boldt, and his wife, Louise Kehrer Boldt.
Another interesting account, also hard to confirm, was that when the first "Oscar" (the Motion Picture Award, that is) had been finished it had came out looking like Oscar Tschirky. The creators then decided to name the award after Oscar.