Friday, March 22, 2013

The Drunken Botanist

The Drunken Botanist
The Plants That Create the World's Great Drinks
Author: Amy Stewart
Algonquin Books • March 19, 2013

Book Description:
Sake began with a grain of rice. Scotch emerged from barley, tequila from agave, rum from sugarcane, bourbon from corn. Thirsty yet?  In The Drunken Botanist, Amy Stewart explores the dizzying array of herbs, flowers, trees, fruits, and fungi that humans have, through ingenuity, inspiration, and sheer desperation, contrived to transform into alcohol.

Of all the extraordinary and obscure plants that have been fermented and distilled, a few are dangerous, some are downright bizarre, and one is as ancient as dinosaurs--but each represents a unique cultural contribution to our global drinking traditions and our history.

This fascinating concoction of biology, chemistry, history, etymology, and mixology--with more than fifty drink recipes and growing tips for gardeners--will make you the most popular guest at any cocktail party.

Idgie Says:
First off I will say that this is a beautiful book - well bound with "old school" quality paper used.  It makes it a pleasure to the senses just to flip through the book itself before reading.  For a person who refuses to cave to the eBook craze, this book is an extra-sensory treat! 

After getting my fill of page flipping and smelling :), I then dove into some fascinating historical facts about plants, brewing, medicinal uses and traditional celebratory drinks. 

I have discovered you can make a cocktail out of anything!  From Parsnips to Buffalo Grass, there's a way to turn it into alcohol.  A most excellent book for a home brewer.....or survivalist.  

Now, I'm off to make myself a drink out of ingredients I can find in my backyard.  I haven't yet decided between a Moscow Mule or  a Frank Meyer Expedition.  Perhaps an Elderflower Cordial...............

Yes, another bonus - lots of drink recipes!

If you enjoy playing bartender, this would be a really fun book for your collection.