Dinner at Mr. Jefferson's
Three Men, Five Great Wines, and the Evening That Changed America
By Charles A. Cerami
(Wiley, Paperback, 9780470450444, 288pp.)
Publication Date: June 2009
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"Cerami wittily recounts the evening in rich detail."
Only two guests were invited to what was arguably the most elegant, sumptuous, and important dinner party that Thomas Jefferson ever hosted. Each course was prepared and laid out in advance so that no servants would enter the dining room to disrupt conversation and overhear random remarks, which they might later repeat to others. Privacy was imperative. Jefferson believed that the very future of the United States of America depended on convincing Alexander Hamilton to agree to a compromise he and Madison were proposing on two issues that threatened to tear the young republic apart.
Plying his guests with the fine wine and exquisite cuisine only a former ambassador to France could provide, Jefferson set the stage for a compromise that enabled the federal government to pay its debts, both domestic and foreign, and make the American dollar "as good as gold."
In Dinner at Mr. Jefferson's, you'll discover the little-known story behind this pivotal evening in American history, complete with wine lists, recipes, and wonderful illustrations of 1790s New York, then the nation's capital. It is a feast not to be missed for lovers of American history, fine dining, and a compelling true story well told.
Charles A. Cerami is the author of several popular histories, including the New York Times extended bestseller Jefferson's Great Gamble, Young Patriots, Benjamin Banneker, and other books.
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