Here’s To You, Leslie Buck

Here's To You, Leslie Buck

Raise your coffee cup and toast the memory of Leslie Buck, who passed away this week at the age of 87. Mr. Buck designed the classic blue-and-white take-out paper coffee cup in 1963. The design was later acquired by the Solo Cup Company and is still produced today at the demand of New York area diner traditionalists.

Leslie Buck (born Laszlo Büch) was a survivor of Auschwitz and Buchenwald, and spoke English with a strong Middle-European accent. He designed the iconic paper coffee cup with classic Hellenic and pop-culture Greek elements to appeal to Greek-American diner and coffee shop owners. He called it the “Amphora;” with his accent,  it sounded like “Anthora.”  It remains the “Anthora” to this day.

Some more, to go:

“Sip in Peace — Anthora Coffee Cup Designer Passes Away,” Emerald Catron, Asylum New York.

“‘Happy to Serve You’ Cup Creator Dies at 87,” Jaya Saxena, Gothamist.



Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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4 Responses to “Here’s To You, Leslie Buck”

  1. M. Bouffant Says:

    I’ll be darned. Of course I’ve seen these all over the tee vee (Law & Order) & noted them as a NY whatever, but never knew what the message was.

  2. Mike Licht Says:

    M. Bouffant: These cups are so important to NYC identity that their displacement by other take-out cups makes New Yorkers feel disoriented. They even buy the things for home use to feel more secure.

    There is a companion item from NYC shop windows, a neon sign picturing a cup and saucer and the phrase “World’s Best Coffee.”

  3. M. Bouffant Says:

    I’ll keep an eye out for the kaw-fee kup on my television excursions to NY.

  4. Mike Licht Says:

    M. Bouffant: TV shows set in NYC add extra authenticity when characters order their java “regular” (reg-yoo-lah). That means with milk and sugar.

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