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Tuesday, August 2, 2016

DRINK BOOK OF THE MONTH! (The Curious Bartender's Gin Palace, 2016)

THE CURIOUS BARTENDER'S GIN PALACE (Ryland, Peters & Small, 2016, 224 pages, ISBN 978-1-84975-701-0, $21.95 USD hardbound) is by Tristan Stephenson, best-selling author of the Curious Bartender series of drinks books (The Artistry and Alchemy of Creating the Perfect Cocktail;  An Odyssey of Malt, Bourbon & Rye Whiskies). It is a generous book for the price, with detailed history of the origins and time-lines of gin throughout the world, with great illustrations. Of course he continues with how gin is made, and then proceeds to describe the great gin companies and their formulas (half the book). Superb tasting notes. So for England and Scotland we have Adnam's, Hendrick's, Gordon's, Beefeater, Tanqueray, Bombay Sapphire – and many more that don't turn up (usually) in Ontario. There are also listings for other countries and regions, such as Europe. Preparations have their ingredients listed in metric measurements, but there is no table of equivalents.
Audience and level of use: gin lovers, liquor historians.
Some interesting or unusual recipes/facts: the classics – gin fizz, tonic water syrup, French 75, Negroni, sloe gin, gimlet, martini, etc.
The downside to this book: there are only a few micro-descriptions of other gin distilleries, none for Canada (candidates: Ungava, Victoria's).
The upside to this book: a good collection of historical notes.
Quality/Price Rating: 91.

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