Famous Feasts in History Diamond Jims Banquet

About the famous feast held by Diamond Jim to honor his Hoffman House horse, menu, history, and description.


The Occasion: "Diamond Jim" honors his horse, the Hoffman House, New York City, 1905.

The Host: 'Diamond Jim' Brady, millionaire railroad equipment salesman, trencherman, and bon vivant, who gave a party honoring his racehorse, Gold Heels.

The Menu: The party lasted from four in the afternoon to nine the next morning, and Brady, probably the greatest eater of all time, plied his 50 guests with $40,000 worth of food. No one ate more than he did, but then the all-time champion trencherman typically ate single dinners consisting of 3 dozen oysters, half a dozen crabs, two bowls of soup, seven lobsters, two ducks, two huge portions of terrapin, a sirloin steak, assorted vegetables, a platter of pastries, and a 2-lb. box of chocolates--all washed down with a gallon or two of orange juice.

Table Talk: Brady didn't drink alcohol, but the guests consumed 500 bottles of Mumm's champagne with their food. As a little treat, Brady provided $60,000 worth of diamond brooches for the ladies and diamond-studded watches for the male guests--making the total cost of the bash $100,000. Guests couldn't recall a nicer party given for a horse, although some remembered "a charming affair" Mrs. Stuyvesant Fish held for her pet monkey at her Newport, R.I., villa, not to mention the "divine dinner" a New York millionaire gave for his dog, which was all dressed up in a diamond collar worth $15,000.

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