,The festive season is fast approaching and while most (ok, all ) of us are keen to get a bottle of our favourite spirit in our Christmas stocking, there’s nothing like curling up with a book and a Negroni!
To help you with your Christmas shopping, I’ve compiled a list of 9 Gin Books for Christmas – I have almost all of these myself and those I haven’t, are on their way!
(Full disclosure, this is not a sponsored post, I’ve picked these books because I thought you would like them. I have listed different retailers where I can, and am not receiving payment from them.)
The Gin Dictionary, by David T. Smith
As the name suggests this is an A-Z of everything you need to know about gin. It covers Ingredients, distilling techniques, tasting notes, interesting asides and features on many gin-based drinks from around the world.
David T. Smith was one of the earliest gin writers I came across when I started my own journey into gin. His website boasts over 400 gin reviews and has chaired the gin judging for the American Distilling Institute, Worlds Best Drinks and Gin Masters competitions. He also judges for IWSC as their gin specialist.
The Curious Bartender’s Gin Palace, by Tristan Stephenson
The Curious Bartender’s Gin Place is a comprehensive guide to all things gin. It covers gin history, various production methods, gin botanicals, gin distilleries and a range of different gins for you to try. Tristan is a celebrated bartender and bar owner, so there are some interesting recipes to try, including a very old gin recipe called Purl.
Gin: The Essential Guide for Gin Aficionados
A celebration of gin in all its forms from gin guru Geraldine Coates, who has been writing and teaching on the topic of gin for more than a decade. While the book covers the familiar topics of gin history, production and ingredients, it also takes a look at different gin styles, including popular flavoured gins. Cocktails recipes and using gin as a cooking ingredient also get a look in, making this book an all-round winner.
Gin : The Manual, by Dave Broom
If you only buy one book on gin, make it this one. There are too many things to say about award-winning author Dave Broom . He is probably one of the world’s best known spirits writer, educator and ambassador. I confess I have fan-girled, several times.
The gin manual has carefully researched and detailed chapters on the history and production of gin, but really comes into its own when looking at individual gins.
Dave puts each gin into a ‘flavour camp’ e.g. Citric/Juniper, gives a short summary and then scores each gin’s performance in four different gin drinks – in a Gin and tonic, with Sicilian lemonade, in a Negroni and a martini. There are also an abundance of recipes for you to try too!
(Check out his whisky and rum manuals)
The World Atlas of Gin: Explore the Gins of More Than 50 Countries, by Joel Harrison & Neil Ridley
This is beautiful coffee table book that does exactly what it says on the front.
During their travels, the authors uncovered the unusual botanicals, base spirits and different techniques that are employed in various parts of the world, with gins from over 50 countries featured.
It was a bit light on Australian gins for me, but as the authors admit, there are so many gins coming to market every day, that it would be impossible to make this book a comprehensive list.
I’m going to use this to plan which distilleries to visit on my next overseas trip!
Sip 100 Gin Cocktails With Only 3 Ingredients, Sipsmith
A book from the distillers that heralded the new ginaissance featuring 100 gin cocktails, using only THREE ingredients? YES PLEASE.
This would be perfect for the gin connoisseur in your life who is keen to get mixing.
Sipsmith always create quality products and I expect this to be no different. Full disclaimer, mine is on its way from Booktopia as we speak!
Gin : The Art and Craft of the Artisan Revival, Aaron Knoll
Aaron is another of my gin heroes and I’ve read his blog, The Gin is In , frequently.
There are obviously way more than 300 gins to choose from these days (this book was published in 2015) – there are probably 300 different ones in Australia alone. However, Aaron’s style of writing is refreshingly approachable.
Alongside the usual elements (history, production etc.) there are tasting notes one each of the 300 gins, a great list of cocktails to try, a guide to tonic waters and how to make your own, as well as tips on creating your own flavoured gin.
Gin Glorious Gin : How Mother’s Ruin Became the Spirit of London,Olivia Williams
I have seriously lost count of the number of times I’ve recommended this book. It’s one of my absolute favorites!
Gin history has always fascinated me and this book brings the whole story of gin and its connection to London to life.
It’s a fun, quirky read, full of incredible information and fun facts.
$18.80 (paperback) Booktopia
$19.99 (paperback) Dymocks
Gin: Distilled , The Essential Guide for Gin Lovers, The Gin Foundry
It would be very remiss of me not to include my Junipalooza Melbourne partners, Emile and Olivier’s book in this list.
Nepotism aside, this book makes a change from many of the gin books available. They begin the story with the decline of the gin in the late 1950s before moving on to the how’s and why’s of the gin renaissance.
There are chapters on understanding gin labels (what is small batch, and is gin gluten-free?), how to taste gin and how to describe what you are tasting. There are plenty of cocktail recipes and a fantastic table with gin and tonic garnish suggestions for popular gins.