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Tiki Central Forums Tiki Drinks and Food What are your favorite bartenders books?
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What are your favorite bartenders books?
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 11, 2002
Posts: 2026
From: Aku Hall, Chicago
Posted: 2007-01-21 01:29 am   Permalink

Esquire's Handbook for Hosts.
New Enlarged Edition, 1953.
Commonly seen used for $2 to $12.

Savoy Cocktail Book, 1930.
Reprinted several times, I have (and like) the 1983 edition, which looks deco-era-meets-1980s. Great trove of classic recipes.

Tropical Bar Book Drinks and Stories, Charles Schumann.
Bartender at the astounding Pegu Club in Manhattan got me hep to this one. Although the design is a little bit "Buffet in the pastel 1980s", I like this book because it goes into all of the different mixers and ingredients and discusses how they're all made and which ones compliment each other.

I also have to go with Ted Haigh's Vintage Spirits & Forgotten Cocktails.

And of course, Jeff Berry's books, and any of the handful of Trader Vic's books.

Finally, I hate to disagree with Pirate's very first posting here (welcome, BTW!), but I don't like Adam Rocke's books at all. Of course I adore Shag's contributions, but I think Rocke's books are poorly researched and his recipes are typically pretty awful.

- James T.
My newest book is "Destination: Cocktails" - www.destinationcocktails.com.
See www.tydirium.net for info on Big Stone Head, Tiki Road Trip and all of my other projects!

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 23, 2006
Posts: 464
From: Stuart, Florida
Posted: 2007-01-21 3:23 pm   Permalink

I've only ever used "The Bartender's Black Book", "Grog Log", "Intoxica" and one by Old Mr. Boston from years gone by. What a sheltered life I've led.
I bet you feel more like you do now now than you did when you came in.


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Dr. Bamboo
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Dec 14, 2006
Posts: 16
From: Pittsburgh, PA
Posted: 2007-01-22 07:32 am   Permalink

I'll also chime in with my support for Ted Haigh's "Vintage Spirits & Forgotten Cocktails". My mother-in-law got it for me for Christmas a year ago (Who says mothers-in-law are all bad??), and it's fantastic.

I'd also recommend taking a chance on "The Ultimate Book of Cocktails" by Stuart Walton. I picked it up from a Borders clearance rack for $3.99.

However, a warning is in order regarding this book. Despite being a large, well-designed book with lots of beautiful photographs, many of the recipes are of *extremely* dubious accuracy (the Mai Tai for example, is a travesty).

So why would you possibly want it then? Because the first 100 pages are a wonderful overview of almost every kind of spirit available...even obscure ones. This reference section alone is worth the price of the book.

My advice would be to buy this book at a discount and ignore the recipe section entirely. The real value is it's comprehensive liquor guide.

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