Sub Category: Bar & bartending manuals
Publisher: Ten Speed Press
Famous for PDT, that New York bar accessed via a phone booth within a hot dog joint, Jim Meehan is an acclaimed bartender with a profound understanding of all aspects of bar operations. In this book, he shares his story and what he’s learned since helping Audrey Saunders open Pegu Club in 2005.
Over eight chapters, Meehan starts with cocktail history and then moves onto chapters covering bar design, tools, techniques and hospitality, along the way including tips from more than fifty of some of the best-known names in the bar industry.
While this is a “Bartender Manual” rather than a cocktail book, it does include 100 cocktail recipes arranged across groups of pages following sections on each of the base spirits. These sections go into approachable detail on each spirit category. A page is dedicated to each cocktail with a photograph and information on the recipe’s origins, the logic behind the birth of each cocktail, and “hacks” – riffs and methods to change/improve each recipe.
There’s much more to being a good bartender than being able to quickly and efficiently make great cocktails. Yes, Meehan addresses cocktail recipes, what ingredients, tools and techniques to deploy to make great drinks, but importantly this book is about much more than just mixing cocktails. Anyone who absorbs the pages on spirits will have more than passable knowledge of each of the spirit categories, and anyone who’s serious about bar management, or indeed any aspect of bar operations should read this book.