Single-malt Scotch swept North America during the 1980s. Now the same connoisseurs, curious consumers, and longtime bourbon drinkers are seeking out America's home-grown whiskeys--new boutique bottlings and sturdy standbys alike. In this comprehensive book, the Regans explore bourbon from its backwoods origins to it modern refinements. Tasting notes, recipes, and a wealth of anecdotes are also included.
In the past there has been a strange sort of snobbery surrounding bourbon and other American whiskeys. Regarded by culinary critics as "harsher" and more brutal than their Scottish counterparts, these beverages have had a hard rap. But the "times they are a changing," and American liquors are fighting back. As the authors say, "If Scotch is a great Roquefort, American whiskey is the finest Brie. Both are wonderful, but each is very different from the other." This book recounts the history and folklore of American whisky, from as far back as the settlement days, when it really was a just a raw spirit. Whiskey's development is traced through three centuries--through revolutions, prohibition, wars, and political wrangling; through good times and bad. More than just a history lesson, The Book of Bourbon is packed with information on distillers, brands, bottles, and brewing information. Best of all are the whisky-inspired food and drink recipes. The Southern-Style Spiked Chocolate-Pecan Pie oozes under the weight of semisweet chocolate, Bourbon whipped cream, and dark corn syrup. For savory lovers, "Manhattan" New England Clam Chowder and a Roast Pork Loin with Bourbon Steeped Prunes and Apricots are well worth the long preparation times. As for the drinks and cocktails--Mint Julep #1 is sure to heat up the day, and a Bourbon Milk Punch is a feisty little number. --Naomi Gesinger