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Making whisky or brandy is not the least bit difficult. Making something you d want to drinkwell, that may take some practice. Matthew B. Rowley"
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page 51.
- Review Date: 2007-12-31
- Reviewer: Staff
Food historian Rowley wants readers of this home-distillation guide to know something about alcohol and the law: “Without inspection and proper approvals, you are not permitted to make any amount for personal use. Not one drop.” That said, Rowley provides clear and well-illustrated instructions for building a still, preparing a mash and distilling alcohol right in your own backyard. It's a complicated process, requiring a fire extinguisher, the skills of a good metalsmith and plenty of patience. For those without the time or skill, however, Rowley includes plenty of appealing recipes for cordials and cocktails that don't require homemade spirits. Fish House Punch, rumored to have left George Washington with a “crippling hangover,” is a powerful mix of bourbon, peach brandy, Benedictine and dark rum. Simpler, and similarly all-American, is Cherry Bounce, made with bourbon, honey and a gallon of sweet and sour cherries. But Rowley's mother provides perhaps the best recipe, an easy maceration of fruit and sugar that tastes great over ice cream or on its own. Rounded out with trivia, tall tales, a brief history of bootlegging, a list of home brewing resources and a few warnings for drinkers (“Even for accomplished boozers, moonshine can make off with your dignity before you understand what's happening”), this may be the last book one will ever need on the art of in-house hooch. (May)