As An Upper-Class Gourmand, I Will Settle For Nothing Less Than The Luxury Of Ritz-Brand Snack CrackersCommentary • Opinion • food • products • rich • cooking • ISSUE 43•45 • Nov 7, 2007 By H. Reginald Worthington III, <i>Millionaire Hedonist</i> As a member of what might be called the "ultrarich," I have attended some of the finest soirees in the most elegant surroundings in the world. Naturally, I have consumed all manner of hors d'oeuvres on any number of snack crackers. But one cracker stands alone as the only brand fancy enough to meet my exacting demands: I will never be satisfied by anything less than the upper-crust sophistication of a Ritz.Ah, Ritz—the very name itself conjures up images of handmade satin tuxedos, gowns of the finest gossamer, and grand ballrooms. White-gloved, top-hatted gentlemen strutting down baronial staircases while twirling canes. Impeccably dressed orchestras with matching outfits performing Jazz Age ballads. Champagnes chilling in gleaming silver ice buckets. White-jacketed Negroes issuing forth from kitchens bearing silver serving trays heaped with the finest crackers ever manufactured by human means.Ritz is simply the fanciest cracker known to man. When my chef prepares something sublime for my well-heeled guests to eat before dinner, he needn't search any further for a gourmet recipe than the back of the cardboard Ritz box itself. A panopoly of gustatory delights awaits! Smoked salmon, atop a Ritz? Sheer delight. Feta cheese and red peppers? Just like on the luxury cruise liners of the Aegean sea. Duck? Pheasant? No other cracker would dare offer such mouthwatering dining options, because no other cracker comes close to the refined elegance of a single, salty, buttery, crumbly Ritz. I could not imagine consuming a lesser cracker. A saltine, my good sir? Dare offer me a saltine?! Pray tell, what grave offense have I committed to deserve such a crass display of effrontery? Do I look like a member of the lower born? Do you take me for an illiterate gutter-dweller, wallowing in my own filth in the street? A urine-soaked, pus-riddled common animal, licking its open sores and eating its own feces, sir? I would rather be that than be made to consume such gruel as a saltine. Now take the repellent offal away and return posthaste with a cracker more suited to my standing as one to the manor-born: that rarefied and distinguished snack item known throughout the upper echelons of Continental high society as the one and only Ritz.One can almost hear the cries of "Waiter! Another bottle of this magnificent crémant d'Alsace! And while you're at it—another plastic tube full of these divine Ritz-brand snack crackers, with my compliments to the chef!"Sometimes, I indulge myself so far as to acquire several thousand dollars worth of caviar, truffles, Kobe beef, and endangered larks' tongues and scoop it all into my gullet with an entire box of Ritz crackers in a bacchanalia worthy of the pagan Caesars.In fact, one cannot help but wonder why Ritz crackers come to us in a paper-and-wax package, shelved near—and sometimes even touching—such lesser crackers as Triscuits, Wheat Thins, and other vulgarities of the common supermarket. They ought to be hand-delivered by coachmen in powdered wigs and livery, in a gold-inlaid chest encrusted with precious gems. Ritz crackers are, and always will be, a luxury of unparalleled refinement, equal in elegance to such finery as Campbell's Cream of Mushroom soup—the crème de la crème of mushroom soups!—or that standard-bearer of fine cuisine the French call "casserole du tuna." Not even the velvety smoothness of the finest Velveeta cheese product is its equal.Vive la Ritz!