Make your Holiday Season Complete with the Complete Book of Spirits

For any self-proclaimed bartender, the winter season marks the commencement of egg nog, hot punches, winter martinis, and good old intoxicated holiday cheer. Whether the occasion is warming up the senses or surviving a night with the in-laws, spirits are one guaranteed way of getting into the holiday spirit.

Anthony Dias Blue, one of the world's foremost experts on spirits, lends a helping hand with The Complete Book of Spirits, a must-have guide for mixologists of all skill levels. Blue, the Wine and Spirits editor of Bon Appetit Magazine, provides a comprehensive guide to the history, cultural lore, and brand profiles of the major types of spirits.

Through Blue's colorful and informative text, readers will learn which vodka makes the best Bloody Mary, the history of whiskey during prohibition, and why certain tequila bottles house the infamous worm.

Any questions which the bar novice may have about choosing, mixing, or sipping spirits is assuredly answered in The Complete Book of Spirits.

However, it should be made clear that this is not a recipe book for mixed drinks. While Blue does provide a select list of recipes for classic cocktails such as the martini, margarita, and mojito, the true wealth of The Complete Book of Spirits lies in Blue's knowledge of tasting, understanding, and truly enjoying the world of spirits.

Being the executive director of the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, Blue shares his spirits judging expertise by providing the reader with his own unique tasting guide.

Accompanying his tasting guide is Blue's own quality and price ratings. Hence, the reader is able to evaluate their own price-to-quality ratio and determine which individual spirit is right for them, before they ever head to the store.

Perhaps the most unique droplet of information comes from Blue's valuable advice on hosting tasting parties to educate the palate and entertain guests. This is the perfect party idea for the holiday season and indeed a wholly different experience from wine or beer tasting.

The Complete Book of Spirits is certainly not your average cocktail book or liquor encyclopedia. For the more adventurous home mixologist, Blue offers detailed instructions on how to create your own flavor infused vodkas as well as custom blended liqueurs. In addition, he offers a guide to creating the ultimate home bar, from glassware to equipment to mixers to layout.

Anthony Dias Blue

"As people in all parts of the world have learned over the course of thousands of years," says Blue, "spirits can provide humankind with relaxation, refreshment, and joy when used responsibly."

Anthony Dias Blue possesses an immense appreciation for the enjoyment of spirits, and, through ten informative chapters, he brings the dynamic history of spirits production alive.

With the scent of roasting chestnuts already in the air, now is as good a time as any to upgrade your bartending competence with The Complete Book of Spirits. If you have ever wondered what the difference is between bourbon and Scotch, wheat vodkas and potato vodkas, or American whiskey and Irish whiskey, this is the book for you.

Regardless of what you are looking for, this holiday season one safe bet is to follow the advice of Anthony Dias Blue. "With a world of spirits awaiting to be discovered, the bottom line is: Enjoy!"

If you would like to find out more information on or purchase, this book please visit the publishers website Harper Collins.com

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