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  1. #1
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    A Good Whiskey Library

    Looking through old posts I saw a number of threads reviewing specific books, but none addressing the overall question:

    What books belong in a good whiskey library? I'm most interested in books that are relatively easily available.

    I've got a handful, including Murray's Complete Guide to World Whiskey, Classic Bourbon, Tennessee and Rye, and Classic Blended Scotch; Jackson's Single Malt guide, and Hills' Appreciating Whisky. And just today I placed an order with Amazon that should bring me American Still Life, Murray's Classic Irish Whiskey and 2004 Whiskey Bible, The Alaskan Bootlegger's Bible, and, of course, Chuck Cowdery's Bourbon, Straight.

    That should keep me busy for a while but nevertheless, I would like opinions: what else do you recommend?

    Particularly with regard to Scotch, there are lots of "coffee table" type books out there with pretty pictures but not much solid information. I am hoping by your recommendations to separate wheat from chaff.

    Thanks!

    Chuck King

  2. #2
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    Re: A Good Whiskey Library

    Jackson's, "World Guide To Whisky" (1988, Running Press) is essential.

    Gary

  3. #3
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    Re: A Good Whiskey Library

    malt whiskey, by Charles MacLean (revised edition)

    A very good overview of Scotch Malt (both historical and practical), some tasting notes (perhaps out of date) some very good distillery information and historical photos.

  4. #4
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    Re: A Good Whiskey Library

    > Looking through old posts I saw a number of threads reviewing specific books,
    > but none addressing the overall question:
    >
    > What books belong in a good whiskey library? I'm most interested in books
    > that are relatively easily available.

    A quick detour through the "Search" function turned up these two great
    threads about whiskey books:

    http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbth...p?Number=30262

    http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbth...p?Number=19397

    I'm sure others will pipe in with their favorites, though.

    Tim Dellinger

  5. #5
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    Re: A Good Whiskey Library

    According to my Amazon.com search, Sam Cecil's "The Evolution of the Bourbon Whiskey Industry in Kentucky" is still available. Its on my short list of books to get, if I ever stop spending the money on whiskey instead.

  6. #6
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    Re: A Good Whiskey Library

    Jackson's, "World Guide To Whisky" (1988, Running Press) is essential.
    Absolutely, it was the starting point for all my research and, really, the only book available at the time that gave a good account of all of the world's major whiskey producing regions.

  7. #7

    Re: A Good Whiskey Library

    "The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks" by David Embury. Probably out of print. First published in 1948; my copy was printed in 1961. A GREAT book on booze. Only one chapter specifically on Bourbon, but worthwhile to get an expert view of things from that period in time. Very witty, extremely well-written, great fun to read. If you are interested in 'cocktails' and mixology, not to be missed.

    RichardM

  8. #8
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    Re: A Good Whiskey Library

    Richard, thanks for this suggestion, I have heard about this book but haven't found a copy as yet. Can I ask if Embury talks about straight rye whiskey? Any particular insights there if he does, e.g., does he compare it to bourbon or Canadian whisky?

    Gary

  9. #9

    Re: A Good Whiskey Library

    Embury does not go into any depth on Rye, except to make the following points 1) American whiskies are his favorite, and of those Bourbon is tops, 2) buy only Pennsylvania ryes, 3) he dislikes Canadian whisky, because to him it tastes like a blend of rye and Scotch, 4) Mount Vernon Rye was the best rye ever made.

    RichardM

  10. #10
    Bourbonian of the Year 2011
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    Re: A Good Whiskey Library

    Interesting, many thanks. The days of Pennsylvania rye whiskey are long gone, unfortunately. What remains is Old Overholt as made by Jim Beam. Not a bad drink, but it was better 10 years ago. This is the one category that has not been addressed really by the distillers, i.e., median-aged rye. We have 4 year old rye (Beam, Overholt, Rittenhouse, Wild Turkey, the elusive Fleischman Straight Rye Whiskey of Barton); we have well-aged rye: ORVW 13 year old rye and the Saz 18 year old rye, and the yet older Classic Cask, but where is 6-8 year old rye? That Overholt at 8 years would (to use Whisky Magazine terminology) be a "cracker" especially at 90-100 proof. Ditto Rittenhouse and probably the others. I think Embury was referring to such ryes, not the youngest, not the oldest, where the char and tannin get in but do not dominate. Thanks to Ken by the way for that fascinating overview of those experimental whiskeys. Wow.

    Gary


 

 

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