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Iconic Spirits: An Intoxicating History (Anglais) Relié – 15 novembre 2012


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Book by Spivak Mark



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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Interesting Look at History of Popular Spirits 27 janvier 2013
Par Stacie Gorkow - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
ICONIC SPIRITS is not my usual type of book, but the history of spirits and their creators intrigued me. My husband has been having fun creating cocktails and trying out different drinks and I thought this book would appeal to both of us. The cocktail culture has exploded over the last several years with restaurants selling high dollar cocktails and drink menus pages long. Men and women are putting bars in their homes and making their own wines and beer. The cocktail culture is strong and growing.

I have to admit that some of the spirits mentioned in the book were ones I had never heard of. But the evolution of how drinks were made was quite interesting. Having toured wineries in California, I am familiar with the distilling process and was surprised at the levels of flavors and length of time some of the spirits need to evolve before being bottled. Patience is definitely a virtue with a lot of these businessmen.

Nearly each one of the creators came from meager beginnings and just had an idea. Each of them had a strong determination to make their dream a reality and fought through prohibition, wars, bad economies, and clearly came out ahead...most living as millionaires.

I think my favorite story came from Jean Paul DeJoria. In 2010, he was 66th on the list of Forbes 400th wealthiest Americans. DeJoria is the cofounder of John Paul Mitchell Systems (hair care products) and surprisingly, also of Patron Tequila. He grew up in a foster home, joined the Navy, became homeless and was a single dad. He sold Coke bottles to buy food and eventually got a job at Redken Laboratories. That led him and a friend to create John Paul Mitchell Systems. Then one day, drinking with another friend, he was given tequila in beautiful hand blown bottles from Mexico. That sparked an idea that has since rocketed to the high-end tequila we know today. But, the best part of this story is DeJoria's philanthropy. His motto is "Success unshared is failure". He is extremely committed to helping others including Boys and Girls Club of America, Mine Seekers, those suffering from MS, cancer, diabetes, leukemia, and autism, and providing food for children with AIDS in Africa to name a few. His most impressive charity is one he started in 2009 called Grow Applachia, an organization that teaches families how to grow their own food by distributing seeds and equipment and then teaches them how to use their crop to feed their families as well as their communities. DeJoria is living the American dream and helping others to live it as well.

Each chapter features one spirit and then ends with recipes using the featured spirit. I know my husband and I will enjoy going through the recipes and trying them out. I think first on my list will be a Tequila Sunrise made with Patron Tequila.

If you are a history buff or like true stories of self-made businessmen, this is the book for you. If you are curious about how some of your favorite spirits are made, the distilling processes of some of the spirits were quite surprising. With each chapter being a stand alone, this is a book that can be read quickly or at your leisure. Or, you can just go straight to the recipes! As Spivak states, "These are the best kinds of stories. They are the kind a writer could never make up."
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Just Pure Fun 1 décembre 2012
Par Amazon Customer - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
I could not put this book down. It cost me a night's sleep. It's a fascinating, wonderfully written history of a dozen spirits and of the spirits industry. But it also chronicles spirits influence on both mainstream history and current pop culture. Who knew that the British Empire almost fell because a significant percent of its population was constantly drunk on gin, or that the first NASCAR drivers were former moonshine runners, or that some people successfully decide what you will spend lots of money on and then create it? You couldn't make this stuff up. What a wonderful read for you or a gift for others. Even teetotalers would love these stories.
A great addition to the bookshelf of cocktail and history lovers. 4 décembre 2012
Par Terri Pena - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
In my mind, Iconic Spirits: An Intoxicating History by Mark Spivak was going to be stories about iconic cocktails, the Martini, the Sidecar, that sort of thing. In reality it is book about the spirits that go into those cocktails. (The book about the cocktails I suppose would be called Iconic Cocktails.) The stories of how the spirits we all know and love came to be are both surprising and fascinating.

The stories are not what you would expect and the chapter list is sure to include one of your favorites. Can you guess which alcohol goes with each chapter?

Moonshine, Rum-Running, and the Founding of NASCAR
The Golden Goose that Laid the "World's Best Vodka"
Transforming Bitterness into Sex Appeal
How the Humble Juniper Berry Almost Brought Down the British Empire
The LSD of the Nineteenth Century
Behind the Reputation of the Greatest Luxury Drink
The Legacy of a Cuban Exile
How the World Learned to Love Partially Decayed Vegetable Matter
Capturing Flowers in a Bottle
American Whiskey Heads North
Premium Tequila Comes of Age
The Invention of the True American Spirit

One of my favorite stories is of St-Germain. The website includes imagines of men oh so gently picking the elderflowers and then mounting a bicycle to bring them to the factory for processing. Iconic Spirits hints that it may not be entirely true, but the image goes so well with the flavor that I am happy to believe the myth. If you have not yet tried St-Germain, I highly encourage you to seek out a bottle. To me it tastes like Hawaii; flowery, tropical, and sweet. There really is no flavor that comes close. Learning that a spirit that feels like it has been around for decades is actually a new product, with a smart man at the head of the company, appeals to the capitalist in me.

The book is very well researched and leaves you wanting to hang out with each of the people profiled. Peppered with black and white photos, the book also includes color plates of advertising posters. Every chapter includes a number of drink recipes from the era the spirit was invented. History, pretty pictures, great recipes, so much to love.

I learned so many things while reading this book and I am happy to add it to my collection of cocktail books. Iconic Spirits is a good choice for anyone who loves both history and cocktails.
GET IN TOUCH WITH YOUR INNER BARTENDER.... 15 janvier 2013
Par THE SELF-TAUGHT COOK - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
Man has always found a way to ferment and/or distill for liquid consumption, and many of those beverages have a fascinating history. In his book Iconic Spirits: An Intoxicating History, Mark Spivak tells the story of how many of the spirits that are popular today came into being. From the origins of Jagermeister and Grey Goose to the myths and legends surrounding absinthe, the author chronicles the ingredients that make up the cocktails of popular culture. With cocktail recipes ending each chapter, this book will be of use to those who wish to connect with their inner bartender.

As a good Southern girl, I already knew the basic story of how moonshine and rum-running influenced the origins of NASCAR, but Mr. Spivak told the tale nicely and with more detail than I had heard before. The connection between cognac and hip-hop was interesting, as well.

Recommended for adults who want to know a little more about what they have been drinking, or for history nerds like me.

4 stars

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the Pump Up Your Book book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 [...] : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
Spirited spirits 30 janvier 2015
Par lyndonbrecht - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
This is not a history of drink or alcohol in general. It is essentially a sort of personal account of a number of famous--iconic--brands of alcohol. It has history, a number of rather lively personal interviews and some historical background.

As other reviews have noted, this is as much about brand development and marketing as it is about spirits generally. The accounts of entrepreneurship are fascinating and often surprising--I have more respect for them now. It includes such brands as Grey Goose, Patron tequila, Jack Daniel's, among others. The aspect of quality is addressed but in some brands, sales and branding seem more important than any particular quality of the spirit itself.

The writing sometimes sparkles and is always interesting. It's always possible in a book like this one that a brand subsidized the book somehow, but there is no indication of that so far as I can tell.

His account of Patron tequila is to me by far the most interesting, but his discussion of how several brands have altered their image by using prominent rap artists is intriguing. After reading the book, you will better appreciate iconic spirits as superbly marketed entities,
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