Just a quick post to express my excitement at receiving my very own copy of Dale DeGroff’s The Essential Cocktail. After discovering the “Blood and Sand” (equal parts blended scotch, cherry Heering, sweet vermouth, and orange juice) in the Great White North, I knew I had to get this book. It’s a great mix of recipes and history and I highly recommend it to anyone who loves classic cocktails. This new bible comes on the heels of being supremely disappointed by the drinks at The Burritt Room in the Crescent Hotel. I had been hoping for a new Bourbon and Branch (who had me at their cucumber gimlet), but, sadly, the cocktails at The Burritt Room were more creative than tasty. DeGroff’s recipes are a great antidote to places that aspire to be part of the new cocktail culture, but try just a bit too hard.

In other book news, I also received my outstanding order of two Penguin Classic clothbound designs by Coralie Bickford-Smith. Originally designed for Waterstone’s in the UK, these editions are simply gorgeous and, priced at under $15 at Amazon, a great addition to any library.