Tiki: Modern Tropical Cocktail book
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Unless you’re imbibing at happy hour or drowning your sorrows at the local dive, finding a cocktail for less than a Hamilton has become a virtual unicorn. Then, of course, there’s the exorbitant moustache wax and suspenders tax that’s levied for the privilege of being jammed into a so-trendy-it-hurts “speakeasy.” A hangover is painful enough; there’s no need to further the suffering by waking up to an empty wallet. Well, here’s a simple remedy: Mix things up at home. Thanks to the help of these trusty cocktail guides, you can learn the skills to prepare high quality libations without having to leave the house.

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“Meehan’s Bartender Manual” by Jim Meehan, $22.49 on Amazon

Meehan's Bartender Manual


Whether you’re a cocktail newbie or experienced mixologist, Jim Meehan’s James Beard Award winning guide to all things booze is a must-own, covering everything from recipes, types of glassware, and assorted tricks of the trade. “Meehan’s Bartender’s Manual” offers a glimpse into the mind of the celebrated Gramercy Tavern and Pegu Club vet along with additional insight into what it takes to be your best behind the bar from over 50 of his colleagues.Buy Now

“The Ultimate Bar Book: The Comprehensive Guide to Over 1,000 Cocktails” by Mittie Hellmich, $14.13 on Amazon

The Ultimate Bar Book


A veritable Encyclopedia Bar-tanica, “The Ultimate Bar Book” certainly lives up to its name. Whether you’re in need in of a recipe for a cocktail classic or a deep cut libation, Millie Hellmich’s essential compendium has got you covered. There’s even a section for hangover remedies which are sure to come in handy if you plan to take full advantage of this expansive guide.Buy Now

“Batch Cocktails: Make-Ahead Pitcher Drinks for Every Occasion” by Maggie Hoffman, $14.81 on Amazon

Batch Cocktails book


If you’re planning on hosting a get-together, be it a boozy brunch, casual shindig, or an Ina Garten-approved Hamptons soiree, this book will be a life saver. “Batch Cocktails” includes 65 recipes for large-format, make-ahead mixed drinks (including non-alcoholic options) that are sure to satisfy your guests and, more importantly, save you plenty of time behind the bar.Buy Now

Related Reading: How to Stock a Low- and No-Alcohol Bar Cart

“Tiki: Modern Tropical Cocktails” by Shannon Mustipher, $19.28 on Amazon

Tiki: Modern Tropical Cocktail book


Rum expert Shannon Mustipher is helping usher in a new generation of Traders and Beachcombers with his refreshing take on tiki drinks. Moving beyond popular classics like the Zombie and Pain Killer, Mustipher offers an easy-to-follow guide to preparing unfamiliar—though instantly unforgettable—tropical libations with an emphasis on high quality ingredients.Buy Now

“Liquid Intelligence: The Art and Science of the Perfect Cocktail” by Dave Arnold, $23.79 on Amazon

Liquid Intelligence cocktail book


Dave Arnold, the maverick mixologist behind New York City bar sensations Existing Conditions and Booker & Dax, breaks down the components of the “perfect cocktail,” examining not just what is used but why. Arnold’s culinary expertise comes in handy as he delves into the complexities of something as seemingly basic as ice along with the science of some of the more advanced techniques utilized in new wave cocktail preparation.Buy Now

“The Waldorf Astoria Bar Book” by Frank Caiafa, $17.87 on Amazon

The Waldorf Astoria Bar Book


Old-timey cocktails continue to be all the rage and this collection of recipes culled from the archives of New York’s famed Waldorf Astoria hotel hearkens back to those legendary pre-Prohibition days. From swizzles and shrubs, absinthe cocktails to whiskey and tansy (prepared with the leaves of the toxic flower), “The Waldorf Astoria Bar Book” takes readers on a nostalgic trip back a century, shining a light on throwback adult beverages that go beyond the martini and Manhattan.Buy Now

“Imbibe!” by David Wondrich, $17.78 on Amazon

Imbibe! book


Chronicling the utterly fascinating and equally bizarre life of trailblazing 19th century bartender Jerry Thomas, David Wondrich offers the perfect blend of cocktail history and recipes. If you have a thirst for knowledge when it comes to the roots of our modern cocktail culture “Imbibe!” offers a thorough education.Buy Now

“The NoMad Cocktail Book” by Leo Robitschek, $19.35 on Amazon


Get an inside look into the beverage program at New York’s famed NoMad Bar (which also has locations in Las Vegas and Los Angeles) courtesy of the swanky booze den’s bar director Leo Robitschek. There are over 300 recipes including Robitschek’s famed cocktail creations which lean towards outside-the-box riffs on the classics. This is the ideal book for the open-minded willing to change up a Manhattan with the addition of crème de cacao infused with smoky Lapsang souchong or someone looking for an opportunity to break into that bottle of absinthe that’s been collecting dust.Buy Now

“Cocktail Codex: Fundamentals, Formulas, Evolutions” by Alex Day, Nick Fauchald, and David Kaplan, $22.99 on Amazon


This James Beard Award winner takes the mother sauces approach to mixing drinks, focusing on the six “root recipes” old-fashioned, martini, daiquiri, sidecar, whiskey highball, and flip. From there, Alex Day, Nick Fauchald, and David Kaplan, the trio behind game-changing New York bar Death & Co., provide the blueprint for cocktail mastery. From offering tried and true recipes to “next-level” techniques, “Cocktail Codex” is an indispensable resource for your mixology game regardless of your experience behind the bar.Buy Now

“Apéritif: Cocktail Hour the French Way” by Rebekah Peppler, $14.48 on Amazon


Class up your pre-party preparations with this light-hearted yet informative primer on French apéritifs. Not only will this James Beard award nominated book will help you make the most out of classy low-alcohol spirits such as sherry and Lillet Rouge, you’ll also find recipes for refined bites (think Radishes with Honey Butter and Ratatouille Dip) that will help get your evening started with a bang.Buy Now

“All Day Cocktails: Low (And No) Alcohol Magic” by Shaun Bryan and Nick Tesar, $18.99 on Amazon


Farmers’ market meets glass in this sustainability-focused cocktail guide that proves rosé isn’t the only beverage worthy of all day imbibing. Boozy concoctions prepared with seasonal produce share the page with equally fresh and vibrant mocktail alternatives. You’ll also find 50 “prep” recipes for homemade cocktail additions such as bitters, syrups, and shrubs. Buy Now

“Last Call: Bartenders on Their Final Drink and the Wisdom and Rituals of Closing Time” by Brad Thomas Parsons, $24.49 on Amazon


It’s usually the patrons that spill their guts to bartenders but the latest effort from James Beard Award winner Brad Thomas Parsons flips the script. Featuring interviews with several of the nation’s most notable booze slingers, “Last Call” offers delightfully candid insight into what it’s like to be on the other side of the bar. The experts also reveal some of their favorite cocktails and share recipes to help you master them.  Buy Now

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Header image courtesy of Amazon.

David is a food and culture writer based in Los Angeles by way of New York City. His work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, CBS Local, Mashable, and Gawker.
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