A new batch of booze-related reading for your summer pleasure. We've two Bloody Mary books, one on wildcrafting, rum, and a funky vintage reprint; plus gastrophysics, Bordeaux, and more.
Click on the links or the cover images to read more about or purchase the books on Amazon.
The descriptions below come from the publishers and aren't reviews as I haven't read them just yet.
The Wildcrafted Cocktail: Make Your Own Foraged Syrups, Bitters, Infusions, and Garnishes; Includes Recipes for 45 One-of-a-Kind Mixed Drinks by Ellen Zachos
Meet the natural lovechild of the popular local-foods movement and craft cocktail scene. It’s here to show you just how easy it is to make delicious, one-of-a-kind mixed drinks with common flowers, berries, roots, and leaves that you can find along roadsides or in your backyard.
Foraging expert Ellen Zachos gets the party started with recipes for more than 50 garnishes, syrups, infusions, juices, and bitters, including Quick Pickled Daylily Buds, Rose Hip Syrup, and Chanterelle-infused Rum. You’ll then incorporate your handcrafted components into 45 surprising and delightful cocktails, such as Stinger in the Rye, Don’t Sass Me, and Tree-tini.
The Cocktail Hour (L’Heure du Cocktail): 224 recipes Collected by Marcel Requien Presented by Lucien Farnoux-Reynaud
1925. Marcel Requien and Lucien Farnoux-Reynaud, two journalists who are also bon vivants and aficionados of drink, revolutionise the cocktails book, tackling the subject as nobody in France had before them. With L'Heure du Cocktail, they initiate a new way to understand the world of cocktails in printed form.
A fascinating point of rupture in the French literature devoted to the subject until then, halfway between a recipe book and a manual for the use of the modern young women of the time, L’Heure du Cocktail is thus the first French work devoted exclusively to mixed drinks to address not a readership of professional bartenders, but the general public. Even more, and this may be where Marcel Requien and Lucien Farnoux-Reynaud show themselves the most dazzling witnesses of the first golden age of the cocktail in France, L’Heure du Cocktail blows a private domain into smithereens. The recipes of the greatest names of the French bar of interwar period stand alongside those of writers and/or journalists (Pierre Benoit, Claude Farrère, Régis Gignoux, Marcel E. Grancher, etc.), actors (Jane Renouardt, ex-muse of Max Linder or Vincent Hyspa), a filmmaker (Marcel L’Herbier) and a poet (Jean Cocteau).
Originally published in 1927, L'Heure du Cocktail is without a doubt the most beautiful work ever written on the art of the cocktail in France, so much that, ninety years after its publication, this rare book continues to challenge us with its insolent modernity.
L’Heure du Cocktail is reprinted for the first time by Corps Reviver Editions, in a bilingual edition - translated from French to American English by Doug Skinner and Gaylor Olivier. The graphic design of the book has been completely reworked by the London studio Spin and includes 34 new illustrations by Tony Brook.
Free worldwide shipping with purchase.
The Bloody Mary Book: Reinventing a Classic Cocktail by Ellen Brown
The stalwart cocktail classic has been around for almost a century and continues to be the go-to drink for weekend brunches, parties, and game-day tailgating. The Bloody Mary Book features 65 new and innovative recipes to surprise any party guest.
A basic Bloody Mary requires no more skill than simply pouring, but this book makes use of all possible flavors, different liquors, and a rainbow of garnishes that can be purely decorative or practically serve as a main course. The drinks are a dizzying array of creativity, from the Vegan Mary, which is packed with umami, to a Middle Eastern Mary, adding cumin, coriander and harissa for an extra bit of spice, as well as a Gazpacho Mary, pureed with onion, garlic, peppers and cucumber to yield a veritable meal in a glass. The bar food complements the beverages nicely, with Scotch Eggs, Tuna Poke with Mango and Avocado, Smoked Salmon Spread, and Spiced Mixed Nuts, and the garnishes start with homemade Dilly Beans and pickles and ramp up to Beef Jerky and even Ceviche! Whatever your fancy, the Bloody Mary is the perfect weekend drink.
The Bloody Mary: The Lore and Legend of a Cocktail Classic, with Recipes for Brunch and Beyond by Brian Bartels
In The Bloody Mary, author Brian Bartels--beverage director for the beloved West Village restaurants Jeffrey's Grocery, Joseph Leonard, Fedora, Perla, and Bar Sardine--delves into the fun history of this classic drink.(Did Hemingway create it, as legend suggests? Or was it an ornery Parisian bartender?)
More than 50 eclectic recipes, culled from top bartenders around the country, will have drinkers thinking outside the vodka box and taking garnishes to a whole new level.
Rum Curious: The Indispensable Tasting Guide to the World's Spirit by Fred Minnick
Once the drink of sailors and swashbuckling pirates, rum is the most versatile -- and the most varied -- spirit in the world. It is consumed neat as a sipping drink, on the rocks, and in a dizzying variety of cocktails like the mai tai, mojito, and pina colada.
In Rum Curious, author Fred Minnick first takes the reader on a whirlwind tour of the world of rum, describing its many styles; explaining the great variety of fermenting, distilling, and maturing processes; and highlighting distillers and distilleries. He then teaches the reader about tasting rum -- revealing the experience offered by brands ranging from the familiar to the unusual and obscure.
A final section provides recipes for classic and innovative rum cocktails from around the world. Rum Curious is the one book the reader will need to understand and appreciate rum in all its glorious variety.
I don't really cover wine books, but sometimes they just show up in the mail. I'm also starting to include books that I think will be of interest/relevant to people in the drinks industry for various reasons. Below, I have a book on Popularity (thinking about it for product development), one on the history of antibiotics (which I'll be reading for connections with the history of alcohol and medicine), and one on Gastrophysics, which I'm sure will have significant cross-over to cocktails.
Gastrophysics: The New Science of Eating by Charles Spence
Why do we consume 35 percent more food when eating with one other person, and 75 percent more when dining with three? How do we explain the fact that people who like strong coffee drink more of it under bright lighting? And why does green ketchup just not work?
The answer is gastrophysics, the new area of sensory science pioneered by Oxford professor Charles Spence. Now he's stepping out of his lab to lift the lid on the entire eating experience—how the taste, the aroma, and our overall enjoyment of food are influenced by all of our senses, as well as by our mood and expectations.
The pleasures of food lie mostly in the mind, not in the mouth. Get that straight and you can start to understand what really makes food enjoyable, stimulating, and, most important, memorable. Spence reveals in amusing detail the importance of all the “off the plate” elements of a meal: the weight of cutlery, the color of the plate, the background music, and much more. Whether we’re dining alone or at a dinner party, on a plane or in front of the TV, he reveals how to understand what we’re tasting and influence what others experience.
This is accessible science at its best, fascinating to anyone in possession of an appetite. Crammed with discoveries about our everyday sensory lives, Gastrophysics is a book guaranteed to make you look at your plate in a whole new way.
The Complete Bordeaux by Stephen Brook
The wines of Bordeaux are universally recognized as being among the finest in the world and in this fully revised and updated edition of his classic text, renowned wine expert Stephen Brook provides an unrivalled survey of the region and its wines.
The Complete Bordeaux offers detailed information on the many communes and appellations of Bordeaux as well as descriptions and assessments of all its major properties. As well as incisive portraits of the leading properties and their produce, Stephen Brook provides a detailed look at Bordeaux's lesser-known areas and chateaux.
There is also an invaluable vintage guide to the last four decades. Bordeaux encapsulates an incredible 13,000 wineries throughout 54 appellations and this book includes a thorough explanation of Bordeaux's history, terroir, and winemaking styles.
Miracle Cure: The Creation of Antibiotics and the Birth of Modern Medicine by William Rosen
As late as the 1930s, virtually no drug intended for sickness did any good; doctors could set bones, deliver babies, and offer palliative care. That all changed in less than a generation with the discovery and development of a new category of medicine known as antibiotics. By 1955, the age-old evolutionary relationship between humans and microbes had been transformed, trivializing once-deadly infections.
William Rosen captures this revolution with all its false starts, lucky surprises, and eccentric characters. He explains why, given the complex nature of bacteria—and their ability to rapidly evolve into new forms—the only way to locate and test potential antibiotic strains is by large-scale, systematic, trial-and-error experimentation. Organizing that research needs large, well-funded organizations and businesses, and so our entire scientific-industrial complex, built around the pharmaceutical company, was born.
Timely, engrossing, and eye-opening, Miracle Cure is a must-read science narrative—a drama of enormous range, combining science, technology, politics, and economics to illuminate the reasons behind one of the most dramatic changes in humanity’s relationship with nature since the invention of agriculture ten thousand years ago.
Popular: The Power of Likability in a Status-Obsessed World by Mitch Prinstein
Popular examines why popularity plays such a key role in our development and, ultimately, how it still influences our happiness and success today. In many ways—some even beyond our conscious awareness—those old dynamics of our youth continue to play out in every business meeting, every social gathering, in our personal relationships, and even how we raise our children. Our popularity even affects our DNA, our health, and our mortality in fascinating ways we never previously realized. More than childhood intelligence, family background, or prior psychological issues, research indicates that it’s how popular we were in our early years that predicts how successful and how happy we grow up to be.
But it’s not always the conventionally popular people who fare the best, for the simple reason that there is more than one type of popularity—and many of us still long for the wrong one. As children, we strive to be likable, which can offer real benefits not only on the playground but throughout our lives. In adolescence, though, a new form of popularity emerges, and we suddenly begin to care about status, power, influence, and notoriety—research indicates that this type of popularity hurts us more than we realize.
Realistically, we can’t ignore our natural human social impulses to be included and well-regarded by others, but we can learn how to manage those impulses in beneficial and gratifying ways.