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4.6 out of 5 stars
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 27 February 2013
As a professional bartender with a scientific grounding, I have always had to rely on food science writings such as Harold McGee's "On Food and Cooking" and scientific papers to obtain a deep understanding of what exactly I do behind the bar, and what I can do to enhance it.

Until now that is.

Kevin has kindly explained everything, from the physiology of flavour to how flavours interact with each other. He goes onto how to make clear ice and a sous-vide at home, and he introduces some truly incredible concepts in regards to preservation, infusions, consistency and increasing the overall sensory experience.

There is nothing quite like this on the market, and I am incredibly happy that it now exists. It is bound to shake up the industry for the better through offering new foundations for creativity.

Well done sir. Well done.
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on 27 September 2013
Absolutely loved this book - it blended two of my passions, cocktails and science. Where else could you find a recipe for water? The only problem is I now have a long list of ingredients and equipment I simply must get in order to try out the techniques for making perfectly clear ice, smoke bubbles, my own tonic water, bitters and mineral water. A joy to read and extremely inspiring. I have a feeling this book will get very dog-eared and water-damaged as I work my way through the experiments... :)
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on 28 January 2014
This is not a book of recipes, there are loads of glossy coffee table books out there for that.
Uniquely, this book delves into some of the science of cocktails and mixed drinks, all achievable at home using regular equipment and techniques.
The book does contain recipes but rather than just presenting you with a flat set of instructions, it encourages you to experiment, using science to explain the impact of each component or process.
This is not a dry scientific tome either, Kevin's sense of humour shines through and it's a really easy read and a book I'll be referring to a lot when using certain ingredients.
The recipes the book does contain don't use exotic, hard to find bottles of spirits and liqueurs, rather it uses base spirits then regular ingredients you can find in your local supermarket.
This book should be a TV show.
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on 2 March 2013
I'll get my one negative point out of the way first.

On occassion, I found myself completely immersed in the scientific content of the book, only to be hit head on with the use of unscientific terminology, like "cups", when talking about cocktails. It was rather jarring. I felt that it compromised the scientific integrity of the book but then I took a step back and it dawned on me that this is actually where the true beauty of this book is found.

Kevin has written a book which carefully balances the artistic nature inherent to cocktails with scientific reasoning on a multitude of topics. It's not a cocktail book and it's not a scientific reference book but an extremely well written piece that lives somewhere in between. The writing is engaging enough to draw you in and the points he makes are backed up with references to scientific journals, other writers and the like.

Yet at the same time, CCAH isn't afraid to go against convention, with Kevin arguing against points made by food-geek maestros such as Harold McGee.

This book won't make you a master of cocktail science but what it does is something far more brilliant.

It makes you want to become one.

It sets off that spark inside you, instigating curious notions and ideas which you never thought could be attributed to cocktails. Every two or three pages, I had to stop and add another note to the ever expanding list of post-its on my table.

This book teaches you things that you didn't realise were there to be learnt and in breaking cocktails down to their base components, CCAH shows you that the principles can be applied in so many different areas of food and drink.

This book is a must have for anyone with an interest in the ever expanding world of cocktail geekery - a discipline which Kevin Liu has wonderfully and ingeniously added to.
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on 15 November 2013
Amazing, hits the perfect spot in my cocktail geekiness. Would recommend to any budding mixologist want to learn perfection. Again amazing
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on 4 April 2013
is you like the kind of harve this books on molecular gastronomy,then you should buy this for molecular mixology understanding
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on 21 February 2016
Wonderful book on the science of cocktails with some imaginative projects to do at home.

Need to give this a much better read than I have so far.
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on 17 January 2015
Very good but very technical will need a bit of free time to carfully study this one!!
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on 5 January 2015
A very comprehensive guide, not for the faint hearted!
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on 9 May 2016
Interesting to experiment with tastes and flavours.
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