Saturday, December 17

How To Mix Drinks : Jerry Thomas

The Professor, Jerry Thomas wrote the original bartender's guide in 1862. His book How to Mix Drinks was the very first recipe book for bartenders. The book includes 236 recipes all made the 1800's way. It includes most of the Old Stand-by cocktail categories. He gathered these recipes as a result of his world travels as the first celebrity bartender. Mixologist owe a lot to the man that first captured the cocktail in print with so much detail... so I had to include something about him on the site.

Jerry also invented a dangerous drink, that you would have a very difficult time finding anyone to make for you these days, called the Blue Blazer. The Blue Blazer is a cocktail that contains boiling water, warmed Scotch whisky, and simple syrup. The drink is not dangerous because of its potency it is in the method by which it is mixed. The liquid is set on fire and poured between two metal mugs. When done correctly a blue flame flies from one mug to the other.

This is all information that has been rehashed on many cocktail websites, but the interesting part of all this is that his famous book is now available free of charge. The copyright on books expire 70 years after the death of the author, who died in 1885 in this case, and that time is long since past. So because this information is now public domain it is for fair use and available on-line via our friends at the Art of Drink http://www.theartofdrink.com/book/.

The Art of Drink folks took the time to organize the text by chapters and they are working on creating the index. This is an awesome resource.

Keep in mind while looking at the recipes that this book is circa 1800's so you will see some odd ingredients and measurements but the general concepts translate very easily.

3 comments:

Lonnie Bruner said...

Hey! Just stumbled across your site. Your ideas are right in line with mine. I think this classic cocktail trend is going to really take off---thank god. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

It's Blue Blazer, not Blue Blaze.

bar.mix.master said...

Thanks, I updated