Brandy: A Global History, Becky Sue Epstein
Made from distilled wine, brandy has a long, noble tradition of refined consumption, but it has also recently experienced a surge in popularity thanks to new cocktail trends. Brandy chronicles the history of this very popular spirit, traveling from medieval alchemists to present-day drink mixologists and exploring brandy’s production and consumption from the Middle Ages to today. Delving into brandy’s fascinating story, Becky Sue Epstein reveals that many cultures have contributed to the history of the beverage, from the Dutch calling the drink “burnt wine” to the Spanish colonials in Peru and California who produced the first brandies in the New World. She also explores the distillation and aging processes, and she discusses the spirit’s many varieties, including the elegant, amber Cognac and the more overlooked Armagnac. In addition, Epstein offers advice on buying, storing, and serving brandy, while also providing recipes for both classic and new cocktails. Taken neat or mixed in a sidecar, Brandy is a tasty book for both connoisseurs and first-time drinkers to enjoy.