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Good Spirits: Recipes, Revelations, Refreshments, and Romance, Shaken and Served with a Twist Hardcover – September 12, 2007
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Top Customer Reviews
This is more than a recipe book. Rathbun's guide is the next best thing to having your own personal bartender.
I've carried this book around since last December; packing it to my office, to friends' houses and to bars and restaurants. The results were mixed. Several friends asked me to bring the book along. A co-worker borrowed the book and returned the next day, asking me to buy her a copy on Amazon (I did). However, a waitress sneered at the book when I ordered a London Fog (page 114: two ounces gin, a half-ounce Pernod, served over ice in a rock glass). She came back to my table and informed me the bar was out of Pernod.
The book's one fault it is that too many recipes require ingredients you won't find stocked at an average bar. An entire chapter is dedicated to martinis (seriously, how many establishments stock alder-smoked, black peppercorn-crusted bacon for a "Bacontini"). Obviously, Rathbun frequents higher-end drinking establishments (I got the sense he's a regular at Scotch-and-brandy bars throughout Seattle).
In fairness, Rathbun never comes across as snobbish either. His tips are practical and easy to understand. For example, one of the few cold, hard rules he maintains throughout the book is the use of freshly squeezed juice.
Rathbun nicely balances trendy recipes with classics, crowd pleasers and some of my old-time favorites like the Rusty Nail, the Godfather and the Harvey Wallbanger, which are included in a chapter entitled "An Obscure Reliquary."
In summary, Good Spirits is an excellent resource for your home bar as well as an entertaining coffee table book filled with lucious photographs, anecdotes and lots of humor. Rating: Five stars.
I love all the lists ("Five drinks to serve to the in-laws" "Six obscure facts to bring up at the bar"). I love that all the French I've seen so far is correct. Of course, I love that the Rebecca gets another shot at greatness. I love the index by primary alcohol. I love the list of specific gravities of different liqueurs so I can make fancy layered drinks. And ohmigoodness, I just love that there is an obscene number of recipes in this book--some for crowds, some for a twosome, some for summer, some for winter. It goes on and on and on.
I was going to have wine tonight, but that's out the window now. There's pineapple juice in the fridge--sounds like it's time for a French Martini!
I'm sure this would make a great gift for the bartender or homeowner in your life. Or the apartment dwelling bitters crafter, or the home brewer, or ... pretty much anyone who likes alcohol in any way :)
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is the greatest bar book ever put together. Amazing drink recipes, hilarious anecdotes, and commentary that is genuinely well written. Read morePublished on November 14, 2013 by Erin
For such a large book, it seems like wasted space at times. I like cocktail books that describe the history, ingredients, tastes, effects of mixing the liqueurs, and different... Read morePublished on November 21, 2012 by seamonkey10
This book has awesome recipes for drinks. Easy to use and follow along. A must have for any bar whether you are home or at work.Published on January 13, 2012 by EnduranceBeginner
I love this book! The recipes are just the right mix of fun, informative and irreverent. The Champagne Americana on page 291 is the perfect champagne cocktail. Read morePublished on March 10, 2010 by mrazar5
I bought this because it was supposed to have a lot of punch recipes, but there are not that many. I could care less about mixed drinks, just the alcoholic punch, since I don't... Read morePublished on August 20, 2009 by Carol Vesperino
I'm primarily a (snobby) beer drinker and a (somewhat less knowledgeable) wine fan, but it doesn't take much arm-twisting to get me to say Yes to a margarita or mojito. Read morePublished on January 27, 2009 by Esther Schindler
Whether a gift for someone else or something to add to your own kitchen collection, this book will make the owner happy each time they open it. Read morePublished on October 3, 2008 by Amazon Customer
Rathbun and team have put together a delightful, thoughtful, and beautiful guide to "good spirits" both through his instructions for preparing libations for every imaginable... Read morePublished on October 29, 2007 by JAY BREMYER