Author(s): Cita Stelzer
A friend once said of Churchill "He is a man of simple tastes; he is quite easily satisfied with the best of everything." But dinners for Churchill were about more than good food, excellent champagnes and Havana cigars. "Everything" included the opportunity to use the dinner table as a stage on which to display his brilliant conversational talents, and an intimate setting in which to glean gossip and diplomatic insights, and to argue for the many policies he espoused over a long life. In this riveting, informative and entertaining book Cita Stelzer draws on previously untapped archival material, diaries of guests, and a wide variety of other sources to tell of some of the key dinners at which Churchill presided before, during and after World War II - including the important conferences at which he used his considerable skills to attempt to persuade his allies, Franklin Roosevelt and Joseph Stalin, to fight the war according to his strategic vision. With fascinating new insights into the food he ate, the champagnes he loved, as well as original menus, seating plans and unpublished photographs, Dinner with Churchill is a sumptuous treat. The next best thing to being there yourself.
"A delightful and delicious tribute to Churchill's heroic appetite for wining, dining and politicking" - Ben Macintyre, author of Operation Mincemeat. "What a wonderful repast Cita Stelzer has served us. History as it was consumed: Roosevelt sipping, Stalin gorging, Churchill quaffing - the best (and not so good) cuts and the great vintages are all on the table. Another bottle, please!" William Shawcross Cita Stelzer's delightful book... makes for hugely enjoyable reading, but there is a serious thesis lurking not too far behind the stories... The Churchill industry has been so productive in the decades since his death, and such libraries of books have been published, that an original take on his exceptionally well-documented life might seem impossible. However, with this readable "gastrobiography", Stelzer has succeeded brilliantly in producing one. --Sunday Times A must-read for Churchill connoisseurs, but general readers will find it vastly entertaining too. --Standpoint Acutely revealing --Times Literary Supplement Amusing and unpretentious... [an] entertaining assortment of Churchill anecdotes --Evening Standard 'Nobody could be better qualified to have written this book than Cita Stelzer.' Andrew Roberts
Cita Stelzer is a freelance journalist and research associate at the Hudson Institute. She has worked for John Lindsay, Mayor of New York and Governor Hugh Carey. She is currently a reader at Churchill College, Cambridge, and a member of the Board of the Churchill Centre (UK).