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Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails : From the Alamagoozlum Cocktail to the Zombie Paperback – October 1, 2004
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Top Customer Reviews
This book is clearly not just "yet another" volume of random recipes, it is instead a carefully architected portfolio that provides a unique insight into this thing we call a "cocktail". The recipes presented throughout this book are both obscure and amazing. A few of them, such as the French 75, Aviation, Derby, and Pegu Club are libations that may periodically find their way onto a cocktail menu here and there, but others, such as the Jupiter, Modernista, Corpse Reviver #2, and Income Tax are ones you'd be hard pressed to find a bartender who had heard of them, much less knew how to make one. But that is not to say that they deserve this obscurity. Each of the recipes presented in this book are wonderful examples of the culinary capabilities hidden within the cocktail.
The recipes aren't the only things that are amazing within this book. Throughout, you will find wonderful historic insights, from one of the few people truly capable of providing them, that will open your eyes to what the cocktail once was, and with luck could eventually become again. There are also beautiful pictures, of not only the cocktails themselves, but also of historically significant books, bottles, and other related miscellanea.
If you are a bartender who takes pride in your craft, then this book will provide you with a wealth of new recipes that you can use to expand your repertoire. If you are a home mixologist, then this book will open up a whole new landscape for you to discover. The secret adventure, awaits.
The science of urban archeology has another subcategory now: Cocktail archeology. Jeff Berry and his Polynesian potion research has given us two fine volumes of almost extinct Tiki lounge libations and the way they are to be prepared correctly ("The Grog Log" and "Intoxica"), and now Ted Haigh expands the field to classic cocktail history.
Ted's research of decades has been distilled into this handy little tome, resulting in a powerful concoction of recipes and stories from the golden age of mixology.
The author never was a bartender, but an ardent customer and a fan. In years of experimentation and alcohol alchemy he has honed his sensibilities to determine which quality cocktails deserve to be resurrected and which are better left forgotten. Yet his superior knowledge never tempts him to take an esoteric stance, his language and instructions are easy to follow, even for the amateur who has just gotten his first whiff of the allure that exudes from cocktail culture.
The recipes do not contain any ingredients that are impossible to get, and a resource guide in the back lists the suppliers of those cocktail components not quite available in your neighborhood market.
Thus, finally, after being unremembered for too many years, a taste bud teaser like the Monkey Gland can be enjoyed again, because it does not, as rumor had it, actually contain the supposed virility booster of animal origin, but a rare spirit that has recently enjoyed a revival, the distillation of Herbsaint, Absinth.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I like this book. I have found it to be very interesting concerning old cocktail recipes that were popular before prohibition. Read morePublished on April 3, 2014 by Dum-Dum
One of the best reference book for classic cocktails. It has proved to be a very useful source in my work.Published on November 2, 2013 by Julien Blanchard
This is a wonderfully written guide to the classics that are now so current. I also loved reading about the history of cocktail culture.Published on April 22, 2013 by juanna
This book was one that my son wanted very much for his birthday. He thinks it is perfect for the cocktail experiments he makes.Published on December 31, 2011 by Karen E. Kelly
I am so glad I got a copy of this book when it was still in print, and I hope for the sake of other cocktail nerds out there that they reprint it. Read morePublished on July 8, 2008 by Sonja
I bought this book on the recommendation of a couple of internet forums and the amazon reviews. This book is an absolute joy, and the drinks that it includes are uniformly... Read morePublished on July 6, 2008 by William Fraser
The only reviewer who gave this book less than five stars (and only three at that!) has completely missed the point. Read morePublished on October 18, 2007 by miKcrobe
Concise writing, excellent illustrations, wealth of info. This is a collection of 80 cocktail recipes that deserve serious attention and study. Read morePublished on September 13, 2007 by D. Chalvatzis
A wonderful book, well researched and written.Nicely laid out with attractive photos and graphics.Great recipes and scholarly research.What more could one ask for ? Read morePublished on July 7, 2007 by Christopher Carlsson