Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Essential Bar Book

This is a review for The Essential Bar Book by Jennifer Fiedler.
I gave this book ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ 2 stars, I disliked it.

Jennifer Fiedler is the author of a column for  She covers their biweekly food and wine pairing column "8 & $20" and covers wine collecting, auctions, Q&As, and design for the magazine.  She has also co-written a book about making beer.

I find myself at a loss with this book.  I wanted to like it, I wanted it to be a great book but it failed to meet my expectations.   I feel like I am out of the target audience of this book.  I am well past the legal drinking age and I am quite familiar with various types of alcohol and a wide variety of drinks.  This book is intended more for complete novices who want to learn about drinks and liquors before going to bars and making fools of themselves.  At that it is a great book.  There are hundreds of definitions in this book as well as recipes for many great drinks.  Someone who is newly of drinking age would find this book very useful.  I intend to pass it along to my younger sister who is much closer to 21 than I am.

Aesthetically this book is very reminiscent of the 1920's.  It uses an old fashioned font and has a very 'art deco' feel to it.  The pages with definitions are white.  The pages with recipes are black.  Many of the pages that face each other are opposite colors.  For me, this is a design flaw.  It is very straining on the eyes to switch back and forth.  If your eyes are better than mine this probably won't bother you.

If you are about to or recently turned 21 this is a good book for you.  If you haven't ever bothered to learn much about alcohol and want to, you would find this book interesting.  If, however, you are like me and studied up on your liquor types and terms many moons ago when you were finally old enough to drink, this book won't do you much good.

I received this book from blogging for books in exchange for an honest review.

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