Improve your mixology skills with these top-selling cocktail books



February 7th, 2019


Even the best award-winning bartenders need to consult reference books for both inspiration and recipe information. Now, thanks to a growing collection of top-notch cocktail books – many written by bar industry veterans – inspiring home bartender can learn the basics of mixing cocktails – and the more experienced cocktail aficionado can take their mixology to the next level.

The 10 books listed here are currently among the most popular books and offer a variety of technique instruction and creative inspiration. Learn how to make the “classics” – or try your hand at some of the modern mixology techniques and ingredient combinations.


#1  The Ultimate Bar Book: The Comprehensive Guide to Over 1,000 Cocktails

The Ultimate Bar Book is an indispensable guide to classic cocktails and new drink recipes. Loaded with essential-to-know topics such as barware, tools, and mixing tips. Illustrations show precisely what type of glass should be used for each drink. With dozens of recipes for garnishes, rims, infusions, and syrups.

barbook- amazon

Current hardcover price on $12.89

List Price: $19.95  – save: $7.06 (35%)


 #2  Tequila Mockingbird: Cocktails with a Literary Twist

Tequila Mockingbird is the world’s bestselling cocktail book for the literary obsessed. Featuring 65 delicious drink recipes paired with wry commentary on history’s most beloved novels, Tequila Mockingbird also includes bar bites, drinking games, and whimsical illustrations throughout.

tequila mockingbird

Current hardcover price on $12.33

List Price: $15.00  – save: $2.67 (18%)


#3  Death & Co: Modern Classic Cocktails

Death & Co is the most important, influential, and oft-imitated bar to emerge from the contemporary craft cocktail movement. Since its opening in 2006, Death & Co has been a must-visit destination for serious drinkers and cocktail enthusiasts, and the winner of every major industry award—including America’s Best Cocktail Bar and Best Cocktail Menu at the Tales of the Cocktail convention. Boasting a supremely talented and creative bar staff—the best in the industry—Death & Co is also the birthplace of some of the modern era’s most iconic drinks, such as the Oaxaca Old-Fashioned, Naked and Famous, and the Conference.

Death & Co

Current hardcover price on $27.19

List Price: $40.00  – save: $12.81 (32%)


#4  Cocktail Codex: Fundamentals, Formulas, Evolutions

From the authors of the best-selling and genre-defining cocktail book Death & CoCocktail Codex is a comprehensive primer on the craft of mixing drinks that employs the authors’ unique “root cocktails” approach to give drink-makers of every level the tools to understand, execute, and improvise both classic and original cocktails.

cocktail codex

Current hardcover price on $25.47

List Price: $40.00  – save: $14.53 (36%)


#5  Meehan’s Bartender Manual

A stunningly packaged, definitive guide to bar-building from one of the world’s most acclaimed bartenders.
Meehan’s Bartender Manual is acclaimed mixologist Jim Meehan’s magnum opus—and the first book to explain the ins and outs of the modern bar industry. This groundbreaking work chronicles Meehan’s storied career in the bar business through practical, enlightening chapters that mix history with professional insight.

meehan's bartender manual

Current hardcover price on $24.07

List Price: $40.00  – save: $11.93 (40%)

#6  Liquid Intelligence – The Art & Science of the Perfect Cocktail

In Liquid Intelligence, author Dave Arnold, the creative force at work in Booker & Dax, New York City’s high-tech bar, brings readers behind the counter and into the lab. There, Arnold and his collaborators investigate temperature, carbonation, sugar concentration, and acidity in search of ways to enhance classic cocktails and invent new ones that revolutionize your expectations about what a drink can look and taste like.

liquid intelligence

Current hardcover price on $23.79

List Price: $35.00  – save: $11.21 (32%)


#7  Smuggler’s Cove: Exotic Cocktails, Rum and the cult of Tiki

Martin and Rebecca Cate, founders and owners of Smuggler’s Cove (the most acclaimed tiki bar of the modern era) take you on a colorful journey into the lore and legend of tiki: its birth as an escapist fantasy for Depression-era Americans; how exotic cocktails were invented, stolen, and re-invented; Hollywood starlets and scandals; and tiki’s modern-day revival. Featuring more than 100 delicious recipes (original and historic), plus a groundbreaking new approach to understanding rum, Smuggler’s Cove is the magnum opus of the contemporary tiki renaissance.

smugglers cove

Current hardcover price on $20.40

List Price: $30.00  – save: $9.60 (32%)


#8  The Art Of Mixology: Classic Cocktails and Curious Concoctions

The Art of Mixology offers a stunning anthology of cocktail recipes to make at home. You’ll find an informative introduction packed with all the essential knowledge any experienced or novice mixologist could ever need and over 200 recipes to suit every occasion. The drinks are grouped within sections on Gin & Vodka; Rum, Whiskies, and Brandy; Bubbles; Something Different; and Mocktails, and the drinks range from a Singapore Sling, a Buck’s Fizz, and a Cosmopolitan to a Highland Fling, a Brandy Julep, and a Baby Bellini.


the art of mixology

Current hardcover price on $11.74

List Price: $15.99  – save: $4.25 (27%)


#9  The Bar Book: Elements of Cocktail Technique

Written by renowned bartender and cocktail blogger Jeffrey Morgenthaler, The Bar Book is the only technique-driven cocktail handbook out there. This indispensable guide breaks down bartending into essential techniques, and then applies them to building the best drinks.

the bar book

Current hardcover price on $23.08

List Price: $30.00  – save: $6.92 (23%)


#10  Tasting Whiskey: An Insider’s Guide to the Unique Pleasures of the World’s Finest Spirits

A comprehensive guide to everything there is to know about the world’s greatest whiskeys, Tasting Whiskey explores the traditions behind bourbon, Scotch, Irish, and even Japanese whiskey –  you will discover how unique flavors are created through variations of ingredients and different distilling techniques. With advice on how to collect, age, and serve whiskey, as well as suggestions for proven food pairings, you can be inspired to share your knowledge and invite your friends over for a delicious whiskey tasting party. 


tasting whiskey

Current hardcover price on $16.10

List Price: $18.95  – save: $2.85 (15%)

(Book descriptions credit

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