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Simon Difford, Difford’s Encyclopedia of Cocktails

Holy cow, this is a hefty book. Is looks much like a college chemistry book—hardcover, 8.5 by 11 inches, glossy-fronted, and wrist-achingly heavy.

Mercifully, the contents of this book is more appealing than most chemistry books. (This might be characterized as an alchemy book.) Difford’s Encyclopedia of Cocktails has 2,600 cocktail recipes in it. The young bartending student may dig it as it can be plopped open on a counter and one can squint to read recipes, like that of the “Dutch Breakfast Martini”—Tanqueray, Bols advocaat liqueur, lemon juice, sugar syrup, and Galliano. Small photographs next to each recipe give one a sense for the type of glass to use and the look and color of the cocktail. And, obviously, with so many recipes to experiment with, one can get a lot of mileage from this book.

You can read more about or buy a copy of Difford’s Encyclopedia of Cocktails (Ontario: Firefly Books, 2009) by clicking here.


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