The Drunken Botanist: The Plants that Create the World's Great Drinks

Front Cover
Algonquin Books, 2013 - Cooking - 381 pages
37 Reviews

Sake began with a grain of rice. Scotch emerged from barley, tequila from agave, rum from sugarcane, bourbon from corn. Thirsty yet?Ê In The Drunken Botanist, Amy Stewart explores the dizzying array of herbs, flowers, trees, fruits, and fungi that humans have, through ingenuity, inspiration, and sheer desperation, contrived to transform into alcohol over the centuries.

Of all the extraordinary and obscure plants that have been fermented and distilled, a few are dangerous, some are downright bizarre, and one is as ancient as dinosaurs--but each represents a unique cultural contribution to our global drinking traditions and our history.

This fascinating concoction of biology, chemistry, history, etymology, and mixology--with more than fifty drink recipes and growing tips for gardeners--will make you the most popular guest at any cocktail party.

-- from the catalog

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - martensgirl - LibraryThing

A fascinating book that will appeal to drinkers, scientists and social historians. I was struck by how well balanced the book is; there is an awful lot of science packed in around the alcohol knowledge. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - dchaikin - LibraryThing

I saw this in a bookstore and thought it might be mildly interesting but perhaps not so good on audio. It's certainly not ideal for audio, but I was thoroughly fascinated. The amount of information ... Read full review


Part II
Part III
Recommended Reading

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2013)

Amy Stewart is the award-winning author of six books on the perils and pleasures of the natural world. She is the cofounder of the popular blog Garden Rant and is a contributing editor at Fine Gardening magazine. She and her husband live in Eureka, California, where they own an antiquarian bookstore called Eureka Books.

Bibliographic information