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The Cocktail Guide to the Galaxy is two parts nerd culture, two parts creative cocktail book, one part bar owner insight, and many parts fun. The book’s author, Andy Heidel, brings readers into the world of his bar in Brooklyn, NY, The Way Station. The Way Station fully embraces nerd pop culture, with a menu of cocktails inspired by classic and modern Science Fiction, awesome 80’s movies, and just about anything else embraced by self-proclaimed nerds, such as Doctor Who, Star Wars, Star Trek, and Game of Thrones. Anyone for a Mai Tai Fighter or a Shirley Temple of Doom?
You might ask yourself, “What if I’m not a nerd? Will any of this make sense?” Andy and crew do an excellent job of bringing together the cultural references with the cocktail recipes. Depending upon your nerd knowledge, you still may find yourself wanting to Google some of the references out of curiosity. You may even have the urge to dig out your old Ghostbusters or Indiana Jones DVDs (Blu-rays?). As one might expect, it’s a fun read that’s anything but strict with the recipes. Andy encourages flexibility when making the cocktails at home. The recipes are easy to follow and ingredients are given in terms of ratios rather than set measurements. This gives readers the ability to easily scale down or scale up a recipe. See a recipe that you’d like to try? Easy to make one. Need to scale up to multiple servings for a party? No problem. Given this being a nerd-focused book, some experimentation was in order. I had to try a few of the cocktail recipes in the name of good science.
Cocktail Experiment #1: Sauced in Space (From the TV series Lost in Space)
This drink worked really well! The depth from the cognac, the sweetness from the amaretto, the kick from the rum, and the acidity from the lemon pulled everything together into a nicely balanced and easy to enjoy cocktail.
Cocktail Experiment #2: Sarlacczerac (From the sarlacc beast in Star Wars)
Being from New Orleans, I couldn’t pass up trying a variation of the Sazerac. The Sarlacczerac turned out to be an enjoyable cocktail as well. This version features orange, which adds another dimension to the classic cocktail and takes a bit of the edge off of the classic Sazerac recipe. While I like the edge of the traditional cocktail, this recipe is a little more crowd friendly. Maybe this is a new gateway Sazerac?
The Cocktail Guide to the Galazy is fun to read on its own, but I see it as being a great go-to guide for anyone wanting to bring a little nerd culture to a party. An intergalactic Halloween party suddenly sounds like a great idea.
- Title: The Cocktail Guide to the Galaxy
- Author: Andy Heidel
- Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
- Release Date: September 26th, 2017
- Suggested Retail Price: Hardcover – $22.99, E-book – $10.99
- Amazon link