Paul Harrington, a.k.a. "The Alchemist" of www.cocktailtime.com, HotWired's popular cocktail Web site, amuses and enlightens, while making the reader feel like an insider in today's swinging, hip cocktail culture in Cocktail
. It is true that there is a bit of the mixologist in each of us, and this book provides all the information you need to produce a perfectly blended Gibson, Petit Zinc, or any other drink your friends are likely to request. Harrington presents a well-organized and thorough guide to drink making, beginning by explaining the intricacies of mixers, spirits, garnishes, glassware, and how to stock a home bar. He goes on to recount the history behind 64 classic cocktails (the Lemon Drop may have fern bar origins, but it still meets with the Alchemist's approval), giving proportions for each drink, with precise instructions and a mouthwatering illustration of the finished result. Harrington finishes with a comprehensive list of drink recipes, and a glossary that clarifies obscure cocktail jargon. (How does Chartreuse get its color, anyway?) His voice is authoritative but witty throughout; he comments with sarcastic affection on this era that he terms the "Revival of American Drinking". Slip on your smoking jacket, grab a copy of Cocktail
, and mix up a pitcher of Gimlets tonight. --Lori Forest
About the Author
Paul Harrington, a bartender for ten years, is the columnist for the Web site ?Cocktail? and is featured in publications from Go to The Economist. He hosts cocktail gatherings for such companies as Microsoft and the band Combustible Edison.