The Cocktails of the Ritz Paris by Colin Peter Field is an excellent guide to cocktail making, history and stories of the famous Bar Hemingway, where several now famous and common concoctions were invented. the book was a gift by my similarly cocktail appreciative dad, who would not be too impressed that I failed to splurge on a thirty dollar cocktail there on my visit for work.
Still, maybe I can now attempt to make my own for far less money. This is a book for the time in your life when simple or store bought just won't cut it (there is an age when Bacardi mixers should no longer be in your freezer). It's for get togethers where you want to take the effort and time and care to perfect the balance of ingredients and impress friends and even yourself with sophisticated beverages.
Among the many classics here (manhattan, dry martini, margarita to name a few) there are plenty of fun, less familiar ones including The Fiesta – a shot of cointreau, grenadine, vodka and campari – yum! and the potent sounding Whiz-bang (bitters, grenadine, absinthe, vermouth, whiskey) and the savory Dakota (vodka, carrot juice, beef consomme, salt, pepper, Tabasco, worcestershire) that all sound like contenders for my next get together.
The amounts are universal – instead of using oz he gives ingredients in parts, so anyone can make them by eye. The whimsical illustrations by Yoko Ueta are charming.