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The Savoy Cocktail Book

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Synonymous with style, elegance, and sophistication, the Savoy is unsurprisingly also the birthplace of some of the most famous cocktails in the world. During the 1920s and 1930s, Prohibition-dodging Americans visiting London for tea-dances and cocktails made the bar at the Savoy their home. Here they were entertained by legendary American barman Harry Craddock, inventor of the White Lady and popularizer of the Dry Martini. Originally published in 1930, the Savoy Cocktail Book features 750 of Harry's most popular recipes. It is a fascinating record of the cocktails that set London alight at the time—and which are just as popular today. Taking you from Slings to Smashes, Fizzes to Flips, and featuring art deco illustrations, this book is the perfect gift for any budding mixologist or fan of 1930s-style decadence and sophistication.

286 pages, Hardcover

First published January 1, 1930

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5 stars
186 (48%)
4 stars
125 (32%)
3 stars
62 (16%)
2 stars
10 (2%)
1 star
3 (<1%)
Displaying 1 - 24 of 24 reviews
Profile Image for H James.
298 reviews24 followers
March 25, 2018
There's a lot of charm in this relic of Prohibition era cocktail culture, but as a recipe book the Savoy should not be taken seriously. Weed-out redundant recipes with alternate names, and you might lose 40% of this book. Weed-out recipes with trivial proportional differences, and you'll lose another 40%. Weed-out noxious, candy-sweet concoctions, and you'll loose another 10%. That final 10% is worth reading, but many will be familiar and most of the rest will rely on ingredients unavailable for the past half-century.
Profile Image for Amy.
Author 2 books153 followers
August 17, 2016
Got this as a gift for javaczuk, who has an endless fascination in the art of mixed drinks, especially those in earlier days. We are working our way through this and the other books I got for him for our anniversary, at a steady, but healthy rate. Since bartending is a part of the manuscript he is writing, it's all research. God help my liver.

(This seems to be his go-to one when he has questions.)
Profile Image for Cristhian.
Author 2 books45 followers
July 4, 2019
Joya. Una maravilla de libro con cientos de recetas clásicas aunado a un apéndice dedicado a los vinos (y un hoax a manera de prólogo).

April 5, 2020
If you want to impress a potential employer with your cocktail making expertise, recreate Harry Craddocks' original White Lady recipe found in The Savoy Cocktail Book.
Its no mean feat to remember hundreds of extraordinary cocktails, fortunately you can find 750 in the one location in the bar bible that is Savoy. Recipes synthesized from the 20’s and 30’s with the addition of Craddocks signatures are measured in Dashes, Glasses and Hookers retaining its Prohibition era feel.
Part II of the bible introduces the reader to the world of wine covering topics of Champagne and Bordeaux and the fascinating history behind fermented grape juice.
The Savoy Cocktail Book is an industry staple and a compass for aspiring bar tenders.
Profile Image for Philbeert.
140 reviews11 followers
March 27, 2018
I can appreciate this book for its history, often wacky cocktails (to our time) & a rather well-written wine section. However, having a reference book without an index or way to look up a drink other than by name yields a major issue. Also, numerous cocktails are the same ingredients in ever-so-slightly different proportions and possibly a different garnish; different cocktails these do not make.

Time for a drink!
Profile Image for Jordan J. Andlovec.
151 reviews5 followers
August 28, 2019
I classic compendium of cocktails from the golden age of the craft. This edition itself is beautifully designed and fits the period perfectly. Although Craddock stole a few (or more) of these recipes from other bartenders and displayed them as his own, there isn't a more suited book for one's bar collection than this.
133 reviews1 follower
February 14, 2020
I read a 1999 edition b Pavilion Books. It is a complete reprint of an early edition, with no forward or anything. Interesting as a historic resource, but most of the cocktails sound gross and outdated.
April 8, 2020
Despite its venerable reputation and authorship, it's a difficult book to navigate. Unlike most good cocktail books, it lacks indexes at the rear based on ingredients or names. For example, trying to find a recipe for the Bloody Mary, which I was unable to locate, was impossible.
9 reviews
January 2, 2021
A charming book that is as much a guide to cocktails as a historical source of cocktail making. Interesting to see which cocktails have stood the test of time and how tastes have changed along the way.
Profile Image for Jinjer.
678 reviews4 followers
September 3, 2023
Don't be put off by the 3 stars. It's hard to rate a book that is nothing but cocktail recipes. It did what it set out to do so technically it should get 5 stars. I gave it 3 because none of the cocktails were ones that *I* was looking for. But as a book about cocktails at The Savoy, it's perfect.
Profile Image for Mark Watkins.
131 reviews8 followers
December 15, 2017
The old, original classic cocktail book. 1st home to iconic cocktails such as the French 75, Blood & Sand, and many others. The art deco illustrations aren't bad either.
Profile Image for Scott Andrews.
407 reviews6 followers
October 5, 2022
Five for the retro appeal.
Minus one for all of that sugar! Wow. A lot of sugar.
Profile Image for Francesca.
116 reviews4 followers
June 14, 2023
The book offers a comprehensive collection of cocktail recipes, making it a valuable resource for mixology enthusiasts. However, it lacks modern updates and some recipes may feel outdated. While it remains a classic reference, it may not fully satisfy those seeking contemporary cocktail creations.
Profile Image for Donna.
479 reviews15 followers
April 5, 2017
No, I didn't read every word of every recipe, but I read the name of each and noted its main ingredient. And the prose elements of this guidebook are stellar, particularly in the wine section. The portion quoted from Colette's "The Lucky Hour of Great Wines" is great reading. And the happy ending of the book is ultimately fitting to its subject. Bottoms up!
Profile Image for Thomas Wictor.
Author 9 books29 followers
April 6, 2014
What a fun book! You can get lost in it as you imagine all the high rollers, millionaires, and adventurers who tossed back countless One Exciting Nights, Trilbys, and Morning Glory Fizzes. A must for novelists recreating the twenties through the fifties, the Golden Age of cocktails. Alcoholics should avoid it. The temptation to try every single one will kill you to death.
Profile Image for Jaime.
17 reviews
February 2, 2008
come over and we'll try to mix some cocktails... but it may be hard to find all the ingredients... it's okay, we'll improvise! :)

the graphics in the book are amazing (from a graphic designer's point of view).
Profile Image for Scott.
114 reviews
Want to read
August 11, 2011
Probably not a book I'd actually sit down and read in one shot, but more of a cookbook for the bar. I tried one cocktail featuring sherry that was not so good. Hopefully there's more gems in there, it IS a classic after all..
Profile Image for Kristen Kolb.
23 reviews
July 19, 2012
The quintessential cocktail handbook. Amazingly entertaining and funny, even more so impressive as it was first published in 1930. Worth a read and a stack of page markers for making notes of cocktails to try!
Profile Image for Emerset.
46 reviews6 followers
February 26, 2016
Not enough punch or life in this book. I wish every cocktail came with a few sentences of background stories or suggestions for possible modifications even if that meant there were fewer cocktails. Still looking for the perfect cocktail book.
Profile Image for Robert.
63 reviews3 followers
March 1, 2016
Endless variety here. Some better than others, but work through it a bit, and you'll find what you like.
Profile Image for Adsy.
6 reviews1 follower
December 3, 2013
The best cocktail book I have ever read. If you need to learn classic cocktails, you cannot be without the book.
Profile Image for Anne Frisbie.
648 reviews25 followers
May 7, 2017
Harry Craddock - American, New Yorker, Londoner (because of the Prohibition) - was the father of prohibition cocktails. This book is really a reference book for classic cocktails. No pictures. Recipes are alphabetical so it works well as a reference book. Not an inspiring cocktail but great to have in case you want to look at any classic cocktail recipe.
Displaying 1 - 24 of 24 reviews

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