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  • The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide
  • Written by Sharon Tyler Herbst
  • Format: eBook | ISBN: 9780307568427
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The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide

Written by Sharon Tyler HerbstAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Sharon Tyler Herbst


List Price: $11.99


On Sale: July 01, 2009
Pages: 0 | ISBN: 978-0-307-56842-7
Published by : Clarkson Potter Potter/TenSpeed/Harmony
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What's a Dirty Martini? How do you pronounce Cuarenta Y Tres? Which glass do you use for a Stinger? How did the Margarita get its name?

Answers to these questions and thousands more can be found in The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide, a one-stop, user-friendly cocktail guide featuring more than 1,000 drink recipes and 600 definitions for cocktail-related terms.

The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide offers a unique blend of features, including:

Definitions of over 600 cocktail- and drink-related terms, including liqueurs, types of drinks, cocktail jargon, and the etymology of drinks like the Martini and the Fuzzy Navel, all organized in an easy-to-use A-to-Z format with sound-out phonetics.
Drink recipes for more than 1,000 cocktails for every season and occasion.  Each recipe is complete with a graphic showing the appropriate glass to use.
Ideas on how to make sure guests have a great time while encouraging responsible drinking.
Tips on everything from stocking a home bar to choosing the right glassware, plus loads of professional bartending tricks and shortcuts for creating the perfect cocktail.
Humor through anecdotes, toasts, and quotes from the famous and infamous.
Four indexes that make finding the listing you want a snap!

Accessible, fun, hip, and written in the Herbsts' inimitable style, The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide deserves a place at every home and professional bar.

From the Trade Paperback edition.


The New Cocktail Culture

The trouble with the world is that everybody in it is three drinks behind.

Famed British satirist Samuel Butler once said, "The human intellect owes its superiority over that of the lower animals in great measure to the stimulus which alcohol has given to imagination." Of course these words were penned in the seventeenth century, which only goes to show that what goes around comes around .  .  .  or everything old is new again.  Yes, cocktails are definitely back in a major way.  But with a twist, as a new generation passionately embraces the retro cocktail heyday of the 1940s and '50s and mixes it with twenty-first-century flair to create a hip new cocktail culture that's sexy, inventive, and exciting, with a generous jolt of attitude.

With The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide as your "cocktail connection," you'll be right in the swing of things.  We've compiled what we hope is an intoxicating blend of drink recipes and terms in an easy-to-use A-to-Z format, complete with liberal dashes of humor through jokes and quotes from the famous and infamous.  And we've topped it all off with an ample spritz of cocktail techniques, tips, history, etymology, and phonetic pronunciations.

So, you ask, just what's in this tasty little tome? First of all, there are over 1,000 drink recipes--more than most people will need in a lifetime.  You'll find everything from timeless classics like the Martini, Manhattan, and Mint Julep, to newer raves like Sex on the Beach, Liquid Cocaine, and Kamikaze.  There are short drinks, tall drinks, even super-small drinks--hot, cold, flaming, frosty, creamy, boozy, and boozefree cocktails for any and every occasion.  But recipes aren't all you'll find in The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide.  There are 600 definitions for cocktail- and drink-related terms for liquors, liqueurs, mixers, wine, and beer, as well as bartender lingo and general cocktail phraseology.

Good hosting starts with the basics, and this book is brimming with everything you'll need to prepare drinks that will establish your reputation as an accomplished barsmith.  You'll learn dozens of insider's tricks of the cocktail trade including: How to choose the right glassware; what bar tools (from citrus strippers to cocktail shakers) can make life easier; how to stock a home bar with everything from spirits to mixers to garnishes; drink-mixing techniques, from stirring to shaking (and, no, you can't "bruise" gin or any other liquid); how to create fruit garnishes and make decorative punch-bowl ice rings and flavored ice cubes; how to make flaming and layered drinks; tips on opening champagne and wine bottles; and much, much more.

And because the measure of a good drink is exact measurements, you'll find accurate equivalents for everything from a dash to a gallon--no vague "1 part this, to 2 parts that" in this book.  You'll also find equivalents for nonalcoholic ingredients (such as the amount of juice in a lemon), plus a chart on common sizes of wine and spirit bottles.  Speaking of wine, there's also plenty of information for wine and beer lovers, from styles and brands to how to store, pour, and serve both libations.

But there's more, including step-by-step guidelines for how to order wine in a restaurant, plus a section on the art of toasting, complete with dozens of toasts for almost any occasion.  There's also an important segment on responsible drinking.  And if you tend to overindulge, there's information on how to avoid a hangover as well as charts on blood alcohol levels and current state laws on blood alcohol limits for driving while intoxicated.  And for those who just have to know, there are calorie counts for beers, wines, liquors, liqueurs, and mixers.  Last but not least, we've created four indexes (more than any other book of this kind) to enable you to find just the drink you want.

One thing that became abundantly clear while writing this book is that there are absolutely no absolutes in making drinks.  While some declare the perfect Martini is stirred, not shaken, others insist it be shaken, not stirred.  But that's part of what makes the cocktail culture infinitely intriguing and so much fun.  Bottom line? It doesn't take special talent to create most drinks--anyone can do it with a little know-how.  And you'll find a lot of know-how in this comprehensive, user-friendly bar companion.  So, relax, have fun, and enjoy being the hit of the party, not only because you're mixing the drinks, but because you're doing it with confidence and flair.  Cheers!

As a cure for the cold, take your toddy to bed, put one bowler hat at the foot, and drink until you see two.

Hudson Bay

1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) gin
1/2 oz.  (1 Tbsp.) cherry brandy
1/2 oz.  (1 Tbsp.) fresh orange juice
1 1/2 tsp.  151-proof rum
1 tsp.  fresh lime juice
lime slice

Shake liquid ingredients with ice.  Strain into chilled glass; garnish with lime slice.


1 1/2 oz.  (3 Tbsp.) gin
3/4 oz.  (11/2 Tbsp.) fresh orange juice
1/2 tsp.  powdered sugar or 1 1/2 tsp.  Triple Sec

Shake ingredients with ice; strain into chilled glass.

Hunter's Cocktail

1 1/2 oz.  (3 Tbsp.) rye whiskey
1/2 oz.  (1 Tbsp.) cherry brandy
maraschino cherry

Pour liquid ingredients into chilled glass filled with ice cubes; stir well.  Garnish with cherry.

Huntress Cocktail

1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) bourbon
1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) cherry liqueur
3/4 oz.  (1 1/2 Tbsp.) half & half
1 tsp.  Triple Sec

Shake ingredients with ice; strain into chilled glass.


1 1/2 oz.  (3 Tbsp.) vodka
1/2 oz.  (1 Tbsp.) dark rum
1/2 oz.  (1 Tbsp.) fresh lime juice
1/2 tsp.  powdered sugar

Shake ingredients with ice; strain into chilled glass.

Hurricane Pat O'Brien's famous French Quarter bar in New Orleans gave birth to this libation, which became so popular that a special glass was created to contain it.

1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) light rum
1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) dark rum
1/2 oz.  (1 Tbsp.) passion-fruit juice
1/2 oz.  (1 Tbsp.) fresh lime juice

Shake ingredients with cracked ice; strain into chilled cocktail glass or into a hurricane glass over ice.

--Variation: Add 1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) unsweetened pineapple juice.

Hurricane glass see Glassware, page 8

ice, general see Ingredients (Ice Tips), page 16

ice beer see BEER

ice crusher see Bar Equipment, page 6; Ingredients (Ice Tips), page 16


1 1/2 oz.  (3 Tbsp.) gin
1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) dry vermouth
1 tsp.  unsweetened grapefruit juice
4 dashes (about 1/4 tsp.) maraschino liqueur
maraschino cherry

Shake liquid ingredients with ice.  Strain into chilled glass; garnish with cherry.

Imperial Cocktail

1 1/2 oz.  (3 Tbsp.) gin
1 1/2 oz.  (3 Tbsp.) dry vermouth
1/2 tsp.  maraschino liqueur
2 dashes (about 1/8 tsp.) Angostura bitters
maraschino cherry

Stir liquid ingredients with ice.  Strain into chilled glass; garnish with cherry.

Imperial Fizz

1 1/2 oz.  (3 Tbsp.) bourbon or rye
1/2 oz.  (1 Tbsp.) light rum
3/4 oz.  (11/2 Tbsp.) fresh lemon juice
1 tsp.  powdered sugar
cold club soda

Shake all ingredients except club soda with ice.  Strain into chilled glass filled with ice cubes; top with soda.

Imperial stout see STOUT


1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) gin
1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) dry vermouth
1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) sweet vermouth
1 oz.  (2 Tbsp.) dry sherry
1 dash (about 1/16 tsp.) Angostura bitters
1 dash (about 1/16 tsp.) orgeat syrup

Stir ingredients with ice; strain into chilled glass.

Alcohol is the anesthesia by which we endure the operation of life.

Income Tax Cocktail

1 1/2 oz.  (3 Tbsp.) gin
1/2 oz.  (1 Tbsp.) fresh orange juice
2 tsp.  dry vermouth
2 tsp.  sweet vermouth
2 dashes (about 1/8 tsp.) Angostura bitters

Shake ingredients with ice; strain into chilled glass.

Independence Swizzle See also SWIZZLE; SWIZZLE STICK.

1 tsp.  honey
3/4 oz.  (11/2 Tbsp.) fresh lime juice
2 oz.  (1/4 cup) dark rum
2 to 4 dashes (about 1/8 to 1/4 tsp.) Angostura bitters
lime slice

Combine honey and about 1/2 tablespoon of the lime juice in chilled glass, stirring until honey dissolves.  Add remaining lime juice, rum, and bitters; fill with crushed ice.  Rub a swizzle stick rapidly back and forth between your palms (or stir rapidly with a long-handled spoon) until ingredients are mixed.  Garnish with lime slice.

India ale see ALE

Indian River

1 1/2 oz.  (3 Tbsp.) blended whiskey
1/2 oz.  (1 Tbsp.) unsweetened grapefruit juice
1 tsp.  sweet vermouth
1 tsp.  raspberry liqueur

Shake ingredients with cracked ice; strain into chilled glass.

inebriant [in-EE-bree-uhnt] n.  An intoxicant; inebriant adj.  Something intoxicating.

inebriate; inebriated [in-EE-bree-ate(d)] n.  An intoxicated person or a habitual drunkard.  Someone in this condition is inebriated.  inebriate v.  To make drunk.

infused vodka (gin, rum, or tequila) True, there are many commercially bottled flavored vodkas; however, not only is it fun to make your own, but you get a bonus in personalized flavors.  Although any liquor can be flavor infused (see INFUSION), vodka is the most logical alcohol to work with because it has the most neutral taste.  Any of the following recipes, however, can be also tried with GIN, RUM, or TEQUILA.

Tips for infusions: Begin with a good-quality vodka (although premium brands would be wasted); start with a small amount--you can always make a larger batch once you perfect the flavors.  Use fresh ingredients, including spices--dried herbs, canned fruit, or old spices won't give your vodka a flavor worth the bother.  Always use scrupulously clean containers with screw-top lids.  If the final flavor is too strong, simply dilute it with more (unflavored) vodka.  Experiment with flavor combinations and intensities--once you find the perfect one, write it down.

The following combinations are for 16 oz.  (1 pint; 2 cups) vodka; double the amounts for a quart of vodka.  Put flavorings in a clean 1-quart jar with a screw-top lid; pour in 1 pint vodka.  Secure lid tightly; shake 3 or 4 times.  Set in a cool, dark place for 24 hours; refrigeration isn't necessary (note: fresh-fruit infusions will take at least 1 week for flavor to develop).  Check for flavor; let stand another 24 hours, or until flavor reaches desired intensity.  Shake mixture several times a day during infusion.  When vodka is ready, strain through a paper coffee filter into a clean container; the vodka should be clear.  Seal tightly; refrigerate indefinitely.

Cherry/Berry 1 cup sun-dried cherries, cranberries, or blueberries, plus large strips of peel (colored portion only) from 1/2 medium orange or 1 small lemon, optional

Citron large strips of peel (colored portion only) from 2 large lemons, 2 medium oranges, 1 large grapefruit, or 5 limes

Coconut 1 cup unsweetened dried coconut (available at health food stores)

Fruit 2 cups fresh raspberries, chopped strawberries, peaches, pineapple, or dried apricots

Ginger-Lemon 8 (1/8 inch thick) slices peeled fresh gingerroot, plus large strips of peel (colored portion only) from 1 large lemon

Herbed 1/2 cup fresh herbs, such as basil, dill, oregano, tarragon, or thyme (leave herbs on their stems)

Jalape±o 1 jalape±o pepper, quartered, plus 1 chipotle (smoked jalape±o pepper)

Pepper 12 each black peppercorns and white peppercorns, plus large strips of peel (colored portion only) from 1/2 medium lemon, optional

Seed 1 Tbsp.  anise, fennel, or caraway seed

Spiced 1 cinnamon stick, 10 allspice berries, and 5 whole cloves

Vanilla 2 fresh vanilla beans, split lengthwise

This man's sitting at a bar nursing his drink when suddenly he hears a voice, "Hey, nice tie--goes great with your shirt." The man looks around--no one's there, so he goes back to his drink.  All at once he hears another voice.  "You look like a million bucks in that suit--bet it cost you a mint." The man whips around and looks behind him--doesn't see a soul.  He's turning back to his drink, when suddenly he hears yet another voice.  "Nice, haircut, Jack.  Makes you look like a movie star--who's your barber?" By now completely mystified, the guy calls the bartender over.  "Look, I keep hearing these voices saying nice things about me, but no one's here--am I going crazy or is this some kind of trick?" The bartender grins at him and says, "Hey, man, that's just the peanuts--they're complimentary."

From the Trade Paperback edition.
Sharon Tyler Herbst

About Sharon Tyler Herbst

Sharon Tyler Herbst - The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide
SHARON TYLER HERBST is the award-winning author of fifteen other books, including the bestselling culinary reference guides The Food Lover's Companion, The New Food Lover's Tiptionary, The Wine Lover's Companion (coauthored with her husband, Ron Herbst) and The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide. Her numerous media appearances have included "Good Morning America" and "The Today Show." She lives in the San Francisco Bay area.

  • The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide by Sharon Tyler Herbst
  • July 01, 2009
  • Cooking - Bartending
  • Clarkson Potter
  • $11.99
  • 9780307568427

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