Bourbon: A History of the American Spirit

Dane Huckelbridge. Morrow, $25.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-06-224139-9
In this raucously entertaining history of the spirit, writer Huckelbridge imbibes deeply of the heady stories of the pioneers who discovered the golden nectar and who bottled it and passed it around for all to enjoy. Huckelbridge credits the Catalan mystic Ramon Llull with developing a method of “producing hard liquor from fermented drinks low in alcohol.” In the American colonies, Captain George Thorpe produced the first corn-based liquor that resembles today’s bottle of Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark. Huckelbridge traces the story of the golden liquid up through the American Revolution through Prohibition and up to the present. In 1897, the Pure Food and Drug Act defined what constituted real bourbon, while the Bottled-in-Bond Act provided the government’s seal of authenticity for bottled whiskey, allowing bourbon to be marketed readily. Drink deeply from Huckelbridge’s free-flowing stories, and you’ll soon be besotted with the honeyed history of bourbon. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 01/13/2014
Release date: 04/01/2014
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Ebook - 288 pages - 978-0-06-224141-2
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