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Monocle’s guide to both practical and whimsical drinking literature.

Diffordsguide no.9

Indispensable to the modern barman, this guide covers over 2,800 cocktails. With new editions every 18 months, content spans an encyclopaedic range of drink-related topics, from the basics of shaking, stirring and straining, to glassware selection and garnish preparation.

Everyday Drinking, Kingsley Amis

Bedtime-reading for the “true-drink man”, a phrase coined by Amis to describe the ardent imbiber. From the cracking hangover to bar accessories, all topics alcohol-related are up for a humorous and anecdotal scrutiny.

The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks, David A Embury

An authoritative companion of bartenders since its publication in 1948. Six hundred singularly categorised cocktails are interspersed with witty and often lengthy drinks-related diatribes that form a deeply idiosyncratic collection of recipes.

The Savoy Cocktail Book

First published in 1930, the 750 original recipes in this definitive book were compiled by Harry Craddock, the legendary barman at the Savoy Hotel’s American Bar who popularised the Dry Martini.

Rob Roy

Origin: Created in 1894 at the New York Waldorf Astoria Hotel, and named after the Scottish folk hero Robert Roy MacGregor.
Recipe: Stir two shots of Caol Ila 12yr Scotch whisky; 1 shot of Carpano Antica Vermouth, 1/8th of a shot of Toby’s Cherry Juice; dashes of Jerry Thomas Decanter Bitters and Peychaud’s Bitters. From Death and Company, New York

Dry Martini

Origin: Said to have evolved from the Manhattan via a sweet drink based on Flemish Jenever (see p199) with sweet Vermouth, Curaçao and orange bitters. Recipe: Pour 5ml of Cocchi Americano, 10ml of Martini (white) and 70ml Tanqueray gin into a jug with ice. Stir gently so ice melts, then pour into a frozen glass and mix. From Rules restaurant bar, London

Hearst Cocktail

Origin: Referred to as the Disgruntled Journalist, this cocktail was the favourite of journalists working for American newspaper man William Randolph Hearst. Recipe: Stir 40ml of Beefeater 24, 40ml of Carpano Classico, one dash of Gary Reagan’s Orange Bitters and one dash of Angostura Bitters. From Nobis Hotel, Stockholm

Drinks to stock

  1. Krug Champagne,
  2. Campari,
  3. Theresienthal “Roland” carafe and whisky tumbler,
  4. Alessi shaker and strainer,
  5. “Roland” bowls by Theresienthal
  6. “Soji” bowl by Mute,
  7. Olive wood lemon squeezer by David Mellor,
  8. Alessi cocktail measure
  9. “Prestige” glasses by Theresienthal,
  10. Stelton bucket and tongs by Arne Jacobsen,
  11. Schweppes bitter lemon,
  12. Fever Tree tonic water,
  13. Schweppes ginger ale
  14. Big Tom tomato juice,
  15. Vichy Catalan soda water,
  16. Cointreau orange liqueur,
  17. Chambord – Black Raspberry Liqueur,
  18. Potocki vodka,
  19. Maker’s Mark Bourbon,
  20. Goslings Gold Bermuda Rum,
  21. Don Julio Tequila,
  22. The Balvenie Single Malt Whisky (30 years aged),
  23. Monkey 47 Gin,
  24. Bacardi Superior Rum,
  25. Sipsmith Vodka,
  26. Angostura bitters,
  27. Adam Elmegirabs Dandelion & Burdock bitters,
    28 Tea trolley from LuLu Bright,

Cocktail kit

  1. Roland carafe and tumblers by Theresienthal,
  2. Tray and bowls by Puiforcat,
  3. “Soji” bowl by Mute,
  4. Olive wood lemon squeezer by David Mellor,
  5. Stelton Martini mixer with mixer spoon and ice bucket with tongs by Arne Jacobsen,
  6. “Prestige” tumblers by Theresienthal,
  7. Coasters by El Casco,
  8. Wine & Bar bottle opener, corkscrew, foil cutter,
  9. Bowl by Theresienthal,
  10. Alessi cocktail measure,


Tony Conigliaro,

Bartender and co-owner, 69 Colebrooke Row, London

What makes the perfect drinks trolley?
Good ice is really important and the clearer the better. The purer the water, the slower it melts, which means it’s better for shaking. The point of a drinks trolley is to get the drink to the customer as cold and as quickly as possible.

What do you need to get started?
Key spirits such as vodka, gin, rum, tequila, whisky and Angostura bitters and a good selection of mixers. A good ice bucket and a lemon presser so you can make fresh lemons for a Tom Collins too.


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