Born Karl Friedrich Michael Vaillant in Karlsruhe, Germany, on this day in 1844, Karl Benz would go on to fulfil his lifetime’s dream of designing a “horseless carriage”, found Mercedes-Benz and invent an engine design still used in some high-performance vehicles today.
A child prodigy, who entered university at the age of only 15, Karl patented his first car, the three-wheeled Patent Motorwagen, in 1886: it was the world's first commercially available automobile. What better way to remember this car pioneer than with the RAC Cocktail, the house cocktail of Britain's Royal Automobile Club? It's a souped-up racer of a Perfect Martini.
For Britons of a certain age, farmer and businessman Bernard Trevor Matthews CVO CBE QSM, who died on this day in 2010 aged 79, is as synonymous with the festive season as Jingle Bells, his catchphrase "They're bootiful" a flashback to childhood.
For others, the man whose thick Norfolk accent enlivened a thousand TV screens is more associated with Turkey Twizzlers and animal cruelty. Whichever. This mechanic's son, who started a three hundred million Pound business on the equivalent, in today's money, of two pounds fifty, worked his way up to a villa in Saint Tropez and a stately home in his native Norfolk.
We're drinking to Bernard Matthews' entrepreneurialism and thinking about placing an order for our Christmas turkey with our Turkish Delight cocktail. And we are pretty sure you, like us, will find it "bootiful".