David A. Embury

David Augustus Embury (November 3, 1886 in Pine Woods, New York – July 6, 1960 in New Rochelle, New York) was an American attorney and author of The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks (1948), an encyclopedia of the 20th century cocktail.[1][2]

The Fine Art of Mixing DrinksEdit

The book is noteworthy for its highly opinionated, witty and conversational tone, as well as its categorization of cocktails and its categorization of ingredients. It also contains sections on glassware, bar equipment, a discussion of several different types of bitters, and much other minutiae.

Embury had "never been engaged in any of the manifold branches of the liquor business" and was experienced "entirely as a consumer and as a shaker-upper of drinks for the delectation of my guests".[3]


For many years, Embury was a senior tax partner with the Manhattan law firm of Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle. He also served as chairman of the National Interfraternity Conference from November 29, 1946, to November 28, 1947. Embury graduated from Cornell University in 1908. He would later graduate from Columbia Law School in 1916. Embury became a member of the Acacia fraternity at Columbia Law School on January 17, 1914. He was the first Acacian to become chairman of the North-American Interfraternity Conference. The Columbia Chapter closed its doors in 1933. He includes in the book a recipe for a cocktail called an "Acacia". He was also a member of Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity.


  1. ^ Fleming, Amy (August 19, 2014). "The science of mixing mind-blowing cocktails". The Guardian. Retrieved January 24, 2020.
  2. ^ "The Bigot Who Wrote a Cocktail Bible". The Daily Beast. August 3, 2017. Retrieved January 24, 2020.
  3. ^ Embury, David (1958) [1948]. The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks. illustrated by Nathan Gluck (New rev. ed.). Garden City, N.Y: Doubleday. pp. 9–10. LCC TX951 .E55 1958.