Bourbon: A History of the American Spirit




[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”no” align=”right” asin=”0062241397″ cloaking=”default” height=”500″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Ydgf-4ceL.jpg” tag=”tasttrek-20″ width=”300″]A rollicking biography of bourbon whiskey that doubles as a rich and surprising history of America itself: As Dane Huckelbridge’s masterfully crafted history reveals, the iconic amber spirit is the American experience, distilled, aged, and sealed in a bottle.
 
Few products are so completely or intimately steeped in the American story as bourbon whiskey. Bourbon’s essential ingredient, corn, is indigenous to the Americas and had been fermented by its native peoples for centuries. At Jamestown, the earliest colonists applied their old-world distilling know-how to produce the first corn-based whiskey. Whiskey-swilling Scots-Irish immigrants had perfected bourbon’s recipe in the rugged oak forests of the Appalachian frontier by the early nineteenth century. In cowboy saloons and gambling halls of the late-nineteenth century, bourbon put the wild in Wild West.
 
During the early twentieth century, Prohibition famously sought to curtail America’s drinking but instead expanded alcohol’s reach as speakeasies run by gangsters and bootleggers welcomed women and made drinking more fashionable than ever. Bourbon-consumption reached record heights-both at home and abroad-as America came of age as a superpower after World War II and labels like Jack Daniel’s and Jim Beam emerged as global brands on par with Coca-Cola.
 
Today the story has come full circle with a renewed appreciation of craft-distilled whiskey produced in small batches, much as it was 150 years ago. Bourbon has been at turns rebellious and traditional, liberating and destructive, regional and global; to know it is to understand the American story. Crack open Bourbon, and come along for the ride.
 

Enjoy a free chapter…

 
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