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The Wednesday 5: Five Books For Beer Lovers

September 21, 2011

In honor of NYC Craft Beer Week, which is in full swing, here are 5 of my favorite books celebrating the delicious combination of hops, barley, yeast, water and pure genius:

The Brewmaster’s Table: Discovering the Pleasures of Real Beer with Real Food""Garrett Oliver. At 375 pages of detailed information about different beer varieties, potential pairings, history and regions… this book can feel a little intimidating. But, there’s something to learn on just about every page, written with such attentiveness you can practically taste the beer. Looking for a fast answer for tonight’s beer and dinner pairing? Flip to page 355 for a quick reference cheat sheet.

The Best of American Beer and Food: Pairing & Cooking with Craft BeerLucy Saunders. This is both a beer pairing guide and a collection of interesting recipes, cooking with beer and suggesting meal pairings. There’s also a guide to hosting your own tasting. Although I find some of the recipes and ingredients a little complex for apartment cooking, the recipes and photos are positively drool-worthy.

Travels With Barley: A Journey Through Beer Culture in America– Ken Wells.  I love this book.  It’s a series of explorations of beer culture, from microbrews to dive bars to Anheuser-Busch. The writing is easygoing and often very funny, like following Wells on a cheerful and informative bar crawl.

In a similar vein of entertaining and slightly goofy travelogue, Red White and Brew, by Brian Yaeger, is a tour of 14 breweries, on a cross-country microbrew road trip. Along the way, Yaeger talks to brewery owners, founders, bartenders, and beer lovers. Plenty of characters, that’s for sure!

Beer School: Bottling Success at the Brooklyn Brewery"" by Steve Hindy and Tom Potter, digs into the business of starting a craft brewery, as the two founders of Brooklyn Brewery share their history. They chronicle their learning experiences, struggles, missteps, and of course, success.

Also on my bookshelf, though I haven’t dug into it: Brewing Battles, by Amy Mittleman. It’s a history of American beer, and I can tell it’s brilliantly researched. A beer book with footnotes! I will read it… soon!

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