Meehan’s Bartender Manual

Jim Meehan. Ten Speed, $40 (488p) ISBN 978-1-60774-862-5
In 2007, Meehan opened one of Manhattan’s least-secret speakeasies, the acclaimed PDT, and here he divulges the recipes for 100 classic and fanciful cocktails and gives away intel that is vital not only for would-be bartenders but for anyone who dreams of owning and operating their own establishment. He begins with a 20-page history of mixology from punch of the 18th century to the rise of the tiki bar to the current craft-cocktail renaissance. Next Lahey presents a comprehensive exploration of bar design complete with best practices for branding and floor plans of several stylish bars. A chapter on tools and techniques includes descriptions of mixing glasses and absinthe fountains and pointers on shaking, straining, and muddling. Beyond the ingredient list, each drink recipe is broken out into three sections: origin, logic, and hacks. Thus, for the caipirinha, he explains that the drink dates back to 1856, that the proper strategy for creating one involves a debate over preparing it in the glass versus in a shaker, and that replacing the cachaça with vodka results in a caipiroska. Brooklyn photographer Doron Gild provides the full or quarter-page photos of each drink in close-up. Less captivating are the more than 50 of Meehan’s friends and colleagues who drop in with half-page, generally lackluster words of wisdom such as “There’s something really important about happiness.” (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 07/17/2017
Release date: 10/17/2017
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