Top Ten Spirit Books You Need In Your Life

8th January 2024

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Any good mixologist should have a bookshelf full of reference material and we think these ten books are perfect to inspire your at-home cocktail recipes.

1. Michelle Brachet: The World of Cognac

Written by an award-winning cognac expert, The World of Cognac does exactly what the name suggests, giving you the background information you need to know about the age-old spirit, as well as explaining how it is made, classified and how best to store it.

2. Amy Stewart: The Drunken Botanist

Proving that mixology is more than just pouring a few liquids into a glass, The Drunken Botanist looks at how alcohol has derived from natural ingredients, proving that even the healthiest of foods can make you drunk with the right distillation process.

3. Klaus St. Rainer: Ginspiration

A look at the nation’s current favourite spirit, Ginspiration features recipes, tips, tricks and facts about gin that you never knew you wanted to know! Work your way through 45 of the world’s best craft gins, while reading the important tasting notes on each one.

4. Gavin D Smith: Whiskey, Wit and Wisdom

One of the quirkier spirits, whiskey has a reputation for light-hearted silliness, which is celebrated in this book. Take a look at whiskey from every angle, from creation to consumption, and what happens afterwards.

5. Andre Domine: The World of Spirits and Cocktails

More than a reference book, this all-encompassing book covers the history and location of every spirit you could ever imagine, with a look at some of the most popular recipes, famous bars and the most important brands on the market today.

6. Jesse Estes: From Dram to Manhattan

Taking a look at some of the most popular whiskey cocktails, this guide will introduce you to different whiskeys from around the world, helping you to put them to best use in you mixology in order to enjoy the very best cocktail blends.

7. Tristan Stephenson: The Curious Bartender’s Gin Palace

Mr Stephenson takes the reader on a tour of gin distilleries around the world, as well as a journey back in time to discover the roots of this very British spirit. With new blends and botanical infusions cropping up all the time, this is a very interesting read.

8. Rob Cooper and Chantal Martineau: Finding Mezcal

A jam-packed book full of different cocktail recipes with Mezcal at the heart of them all, this is an essential buy for every true cocktail enthusiast. Give your bartending skills a little hit of agave fermented spirit and learn a little something along the way!

9. Kate Hawkins: Apertif

What is an aperitif and how do we go about creating the perfect one? In this book, Kate Hawkins delivers a comprehensive study into the subject, with a few recipes at the back for you to try.

10. Gilles Lapalus and Shaun Byrne: The Book of Vermouth

One of the most under-rated cocktail ingredients out there, Vermouth is becoming ever-more important in the bartending world. This book follows its journey from humble beginnings to king of the cocktail cabinet.

All this reading is sure to make you feel thirsty, so don’t forget to curl up with a good cocktail in hand! Cheers!

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The more you understand and appreciate different flavors and how they combine, the better your cocktails will be. Taste your ingredients individually and in combinations to understand how they complement or contrast with each other. This knowledge lets you adjust cocktails to your preference or even invent your own recipes confidently.

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