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Monday, January 12, 2015


1.SHERRY (Ten Speed Press, 2014, 264 pages, ISBN 978-1-60774-581-5, $24.99 US hard covers) is by Talia Baiocchi, editor-in-chief of Punch, an online magazine focused on wines, spirits and cocktails (what? No beers?). She's also written a number of articles for all the major wine magazines. With Sherry, she has made a good choice to begin book authorship. It is, according to the subtitle, "a modern guide to the wine world's best-kept secret, with cocktails and recipes". And it may just be what the sherry industry needs in North America. For too long, sherry has been neglected, with stagnant and/or declining sales. It is seasonal at best (think Christmas) and sweet at worse. There is some nice logrolling here from five other authors who are not the usual "chefs" or "celebrities". It covers the basics: how made, types, history, towns and bodegas, sherry cocktails, and recipes involving sherry (either as ingredient or accompaniment or both).
The 100 pages of preparations have their ingredients listed in avoirdupois measurements, but there is no table of metric equivalents. There's a resources list on where to drink sherry and eat food in the Spanish region (names, addresses, best dishes) and in the US, along with some places in the US to buy bottles of sherry. It is a very nifty book, not really meant for those of us in the know (most sherry books have been stodgy). But it should appeal to millennials and those new to drinking and cocktail making. With its very colourful pictures, this work may be the ticket to an increase in sherry sales.
Audience and level of use: younger drinkers.
Some interesting or unusual recipes: cazon en adobo; tortillitas de camerones el faro; huevos a la flamenca;
The downside to this book: for the first 150 pages it is a great overview of sherries, but in a simpler style that won't appeal to connoisseurs.
The upside to this book: there is a small but useful section on sherry vinegars.
Quality/Price Rating: 90.

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