Esquire’s handbook for hostS—first printed in 1949—is packed with recipes for long-lost cocktails with names such as Peg O’ My Heart and the Connecticut Bullfrog, as well as dishes like deviled oysters and lobster escalope. There is also the timeless advice of the “How to Be Happy Though Host” section, with entire chapters devoted to perennial party quandaries like “How to Handle a Drunk” in the house. $25; alibris.com
Every year around this time, the bar cart needs to be shaken up a bit. This red–and–black-lacquer Art Deco–style number ($4,900; 888-217-2760) does most of the work. But then add a Rosé by Xavier Flouret (212-584-1185), who’s scoured the world to put together a wine collection, each bottle priced between $20 and $40; 10 Cane rum ($50; 877-774-7487), because we have architect Richard Meier’s recipe for a Hemingway daiquiri—10 Cane, simple syrup, fresh lime juice; and Champagne from New York’s La Caravelle restaurant, because it harkens back to the days when Ari and Jackie ruled the room ($30; lacaravelle.com).