Monday, November 24, 2008

Cool Coffee & Wine Photos from Life Magazine

Life Magazine just put its archive of photos and etchings dating back to 1750 on google images for free, accessible to anyone with an internet connection. That's 10 million images, 95 percent of which have never been seen before, available to sift through, ponder over and gape at. I started playing around with the archive today, and found images of my hometown of New Bedford, Massachusetts from the 1950s, and my college, Holy Cross in Worcester.

Then I searched for what I could find under coffee, espresso and wine. The photo up top came under my espresso search (one of only three available, unfortunately). The image was taken in October, 1966 by Fred Lyon in Bari, Italy. The caption reads: "Waiter using espresso machine in restarurant (sic) at Cafe Partenopea." All I could think was, wow, a 6-group head manual espresso machine - that barista must have arms of steel!

Then I searched wine. Much more content here, about 200 images. This one in particular caught my eye:

Yes, that's right - Chateau Lafite wines dating back to 1799. A whole book was written about a 1787 bottle that was supposedly owned by Thomas Jefferson and sold at auction: "The Billionaire's Vinegar: The Mystery of the World's Most Expensive Bottle of Wine." (It might actually be a fake). On the Lafite website, they have this to say about the cellar where these wines rest: "Today, samplings for tastings are rare. Rather, the cellar is a place which inspires humility against the passing of time and witnesses the regularity of Lafite wines."

Anyway, if you want to waste a few hours digging through history, check out the archive here: (link).

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