It's Real

Ladies and gentlemen, I can confirm that the book has taken physical form: my copy of Distilled Knowledge arrived this weekend!

I spent months trying to imagine what this moment would feel like. I gave up (often), because I really had no parallel for it. I would often joke that seeing my name on the cover would make me certain that someone had made a mistake, that my name had gotten slapped onto somebody else’s book somehow. I say, “joke,” even though some part of me probably thought that might happen. I really, really had no idea what to expect.

I’m very happy to report that the feeling I actually experienced when I opened the box and saw my copy of my book was absolute, unbridled joy. Have you ever hugged a book? Literally hugged it. Squeezed it into your chest like it would dissolve into your body. I have. Books are harder than people, but it still works.

I could ramble on about this forever, but I won't. Instead I'll answer some of your possibly-burning questions, after which I'll give you the recipe for the cocktail I devised the night I found out my copy of Distilled Knowledge was in the country and on its way to me.

Does this mean I can get a copy now, too?
Not yet! Unless you're reviewing Distilled Knowledge for a publication or something like that. This is a small initial order for reviewers and people who worked on the book.

OK, so when and how do I get a copy?
October 4th is still the landfall date. If you want to pick up a copy at your local bookstore, it should be available from then on.

If you want to order a copy online, you can do that now, although it still won't arrive before 10/4. Distilled Knowledge is available for pre-order through Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

What if I want a signed copy? Where can I order that?
You can't order a signed copy per se. If you order a regular copy or buy one at your local bookstore, I'll be happy to sign it whenever you, I, and it are all in the same room.

You can also come to a book signing, and either buy a book there or bring one for me to sign! Our schedule of promotional events isn't out just yet, but I can say we're planning to focus on Boston and New York, where we'll be doing a bunch of events from October until the last drop of interest has been squeezed from those cities' populations. Other events throughout the Northeast are reasonably likely but have yet to be scheduled.

If you live in other parts of the country (or in other countries), I hope we'll be able to do events near you, but it will depend to some degree on how well the book is doing, and I don't expect we'd be there before 2017.

How do I know when promotional events are happening, and where, and whether they're signings or cocktail lessons or something else entirely?
Sign up for the Herzog Cocktail School Mailing list! That is, by far, the surest way to get information about upcoming events. You can even choose to just receive information about Distilled Knowledge.

Sign up here:

Is there, like, a one-stop shop where I can get any Distilled Knowledge information I could possibly need at once? That will be regularly updated as new information comes in?
You bet! It's right here:

You said something about a cocktail?
Frequently, yes!

Here you go:

Publication Cocktail
1 1/2 oz. Rittenhouse 100º Rye
1 oz. Angostura Amaro
1/4 oz. Maple Syrup
2 Dashes Crude "Sycophant" (Orange & Fig) Bitters
Shake with ice. Strain into a chilled coupé glass.

Note: This drink is definitely inspired by Angostura's Waffle Shots, which I encountered at Tales of the Cocktail last summer (and which are the primary reason I own Angostura Amaro in the first place). Waffle Shots consist of Angostura Rum, Angostura Amaro, and maple syrup, mixed together in a wide-mouth cup, with a quarter of a waffle dusted in powdered sugar and dunked into it. I can think of no better breakfast item for a tailgate, ever.

The Waffle Shot is a richer, heavier drink than the Publication, which ends up being very whiskey-forward thanks to the Rittenhouse and gets a nice bit of brightness from the bitters. The drinks are also distinguished by the presence or absence of waffles.


The Martian Water

If you aren't living under a Red Planet rock, you've probably heard the news by now: NASA has officially confirmed the presence of water on Mars.

Not indications that there was water there millions of years ago, not water frozen into ice at the poles, but actual evidence of liquid water on Mars today.

It's no secret that I think space exploration is cool (or that it is, objectively). Taking a tip from the inventor of the Moonwalk, the Savoy Hotel's Joe Gilmore, who never let a historic moment pass without a cocktail to commemorate it, I've decided to come up with something for the occasion.

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Martian Water:

Complete with a plant of the sort you'd find on Mars.

Complete with a plant of the sort you'd find on Mars.

The Martian Water
1 1/2 oz. Laird's 100-Proof Applejack
1/2 oz. Cocchi Americano
1/4 oz. Kirschwasser
1/4 oz. Campari
1 Dash Regan's Orange Bitters
Stir with ice and strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with a twist of orange. Sip while looking skyward.

Note that the orange twist is not depicted in the photos, because I didn't have any oranges at the time. Trust me when I say that it belongs. It's amazing what those oils can do.

Neat color, right? Above all, I wanted to evoke the rusty red-orange of the planet's surface, which gave me the Campari + aged spirit idea. I also took structural inspiration from the Aviation, created a hundred years ago to celebrate man's conquest of shallower skies, and also a color-driven cocktail. Its maraschino gave me the idea of adding kirschwasser; its visual and historical cousin, the Yale, suggested fortified wine. The quinquina also conveniently alludes to the Twentieth Century Cocktail, which, despite actually being named for a train, is thereby indirectly named for the period when human exploration of the heavens began.

I could claim that the orange elements were my answer to the Aviation's lemon juice, or another nod to the allegedly-Red Planet's actual color; but the truth is, they're in there for flavor alone. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

You know, like these ones.