Slideshow: Ask a Bartender: Which Are Your Favorite Cocktail Books, and Why?

"Drinks: Unraveling the Mysteries of Flavour and Aroma in Drink'
"My favorite of the moment is Tony Conigliaro's "Drinks: Unraveling the Mysteries of Flavour and Aroma in Drink". He is famous for blending cocktail making, science and culinary arts in the lab over his bar in London. This book, which details his recipes and techniques, was published last October in the UK." — Sarah Mengoni (South Water Kitchen)
Vintage Books
Vintage Books
"I love vintage cocktail books. I love recreating those recipes and the task of modifying them for the modern palate. Some of my favorite classics are "The Savoy Cocktail Book", Jerry Thomas' "Bartender's Guide," and the La Floridita cocktail book. Some more modern books that I draw inspiration from are "Shaken and Stirred" by Douglas Ankrah, "The PDT Cocktail Book" by Jim Meehan and "Imbibe" by David Wondrich." — Chris James (The Ryland Inn)
Fine Art of Mixing Drinks
Fine Art of Mixing Drinks
""The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks" by David A. Embury, from 1948. It breaks down every style of drink, because after that it's all just variations… We invented the wheel a long time ago. " — John McCarthy (Mulberry Project, Vinatta Project)
Savoy, PDT
Savoy, PDT
""The Savoy Cocktail Book" is a great one; I like to look at old school flavor combinations and proportions, then mix off that. Also, "The PDT Cocktail Book." Innovation is awesome to share, but I like that there are still a bunch of recipes in there that require practiced technique." — Vincent Stipo (Vernick Food & Drink)
Beachbum Berry
Beachbum Berry
"I’m a huge fan of Beachbum Berry’s tiki books, because he has spent a lot of time digging up old (and sometimes very bad) recipes and reworking them for the modern palate. I try to keep his precepts in mind when I’m trying to rework classics or put our personal spin on old drinks."—Mike Ryan (Sable)
The Savoy Cocktail Book
The Savoy Cocktail Book
""The Savoy Cocktail Book". It's a classic for a reason. I'm reading "And a Bottle of Rum" by Wayne Curtis now; I love anything that puts context around why we drink what we drink." — Cory Fitzsimmons (Angolo SoHo)
Wondrich
Wondrich
"Pretty much everything by David Wondrich. He's just an amazing asset to the current cocktail scene. Ted Haigh's "Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails" which was pioneering when it came out and remains an important resource." — Michael Lazar (Hog & Rocks)
Tasting Beer
Tasting Beer
"Though I know my way around a shaker, I'm first/foremost/henceforth/always a beer man, and when you talk about beer, there's one testament in my Bible: Randy Mosher's "Tasting Beer". It reads like a Sunday-school sermon, calm and kindly, but with fervent dedication. Read "Tasting Beer", and you can walk into 9-out-of-10 bars in the country and know more than the bartender." — Dan Bronson (The Strand Smokehouse & Cresent & Vine)
Fine Art of Mixing Drinks
Fine Art of Mixing Drinks
"If you have ever met me you already know this—"The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks" by David Embury. He has an opinion; find me another cocktail book that stands it ground on "why" something should or shouldn't be made." —Todd Maul (Clio)
The Savoy Cocktail Book
The Savoy Cocktail Book
"Newer books I like are "Imbibe" by David Wondrich and "Boozehound" by Jason Wilson. Those are more narrative. My favorite classic cocktail book right now is "The Savoy Cocktail Book"." — Nate Howell (Cusp Dining & Drinks)
"The Bartender's Guide" and "How to Mix Drinks"
"Steamdrunks: 101 Steampunk Cocktails and Mixed Drinks"
"I recently discovered "Steamdrunks: 101 Steampunk Cocktails and Mixed Drinks" by Chris-Rachael Oseland. It's a collection of cocktails that are not just classic but antique. The recipes don't call for flavored vodka or bottled mixers. It's all rum, brandy, gin, absinthe, cinnamon, cream, oranges... things you would find at a public house in Victorian England." — Chad Musick (The Green Room)