Stewart (coauthor, Wicked Plants) provides listeners with an encyclopedic guide to the plants used throughout history to produce alcohol. She reviews those grains for making beers, whiskeys, and spirits; grapes that go into wines and liquors; and the herbs, spices, fruits, vegetables, flowers, trees, and fungi that enhance their flavors. The author also covers the many methods employed to distill, brew, and otherwise make alcohol. Recipes for a wide range of cocktails appear throughout. VERDICT All of this makes for informative and enjoyable listening, especially with Collen Marlo's lively reading. However, this work is probably better suited in print as a reference work. That being said, listeners wanting an excellent introduction to cocktails will find this title both enlightening and entertaining. ["This highly entertaining book will please both cocktail enthusiasts and backyard gardeners. The inclusion of rich history throughout will delight armchair historians and the naturally curious," read the starred review of the Algonquin hc, LJ 2/15/13.--Ed.]--Stephen L. Hupp, West Virginia Univ. Parkersburg Lib.[Page 46]. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Stewart's (Wicked Bugs; Wicked Plants) new book explores the botanical beginnings of our favorite drinks. Like her previous books, it is so rich in details, little-known facts, and actual science, that readers won't even notice they are reading an encyclopedia. Each plant description includes history, propagation, and usage details. Stewart includes sidebars with recipes, field guides, planting instructions, a description of the role of bugs in getting from seed to plant to table, and in-depth historical details. She includes archaeological finds such as the presence of barley beer on clay pot fragments dated to 3400 B.C.E. and the legal details that changed the course of birch beer, which started as a mildly alcoholic beer, morphed into a soft drink during Prohibition, and recently began to be produced as a liqueur. VERDICT With more than 50 drink recipes, and growing tips, this highly entertaining book will please both cocktail enthusiasts and backyard gardeners. The inclusion of rich history throughout will delight armchair historians and the naturally curious. Highly recommended.--Ann Wilberton, Pace Univ. Lib., Brooklyn, NY[Page 116]. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.