by David Klemt

5 Books to Read this Month: September 2023

by David Klemt

Flipping through an open book

Our inspiring and informative September book selections will help you and your bar team take your front of house and bar program to the next level.

For this month’s list we’re showcasing the 17th annual Spirited Awards finalists in the Best New Book on Drinks Culture, History, or Spirits category. So, below you’ll find the top-four nominees in that particular category, plus an additional self-improvement book.

To review the book recommendations from August 2023, click here.

Let’s jump in!

Modern Caribbean Rum: A Contemporary Reference to the Region’s Essential Spirit

Join me in congratulating authors Matt Pietrek and Carrie Smith for earning the 2023 Spirited Award for Best New Book on Drinks Culture, History, or Spirits!

This 825-page tome is a deep dive into modern Caribbean rum—as the title clearly states—split into four distinct sections:

  • An overview of this spirits category, including common misconceptions;
  • The process of producing rum, including flavor science;
  • A look at the business of rum, including brands and trade organizations; and
  • The stories of 20 modern Caribbean rum-producing regions, including profiles of more than 70 producers.

Whether you’re a rum aficionado, rum-curious, or someone looking to learn as much as possible about the rum category, this book is a must-read. Purchase here.

A SENSE OF PLACE: A Journey Around Scotland’s Whisky

Author Dave Broom was born in Glasgow. As he says, “I am a Glaswegian who gets paid to drink spirits and then write about them. I’ve been getting away with this for over 20 years and have somehow won various awards along the way, but being Scottish I don’t go on about it.”

This book, A SENSE OF PLACE, is more than an analysis of Scotch whisky. Rather, this is a personal story, delivering on its title—this book gives the reader a sense of place.

From Amazon: “In this beautifully crafted narrative, award-winning writer Dave Broom examines Scotch whisky from the point of view of its terroir—the land, weather, history, craft and culture that feed and enhance the whisky itself. Travelling around his native Scotland and visiting distilleries from Islay and Harris to Orkney and Speyside, Dave explores the whiskies made there and the elements in their distilling, and locality, which make them what they are. Along the way he tells the story of whisky’s history and considers what whisky is now, and where it is going.”

Pick up the hardcover today.

Doctors and Distillers: The Remarkable Medicinal History of Beer, Wine, Spirits, and Cocktails

As the historians in our industry have known for a while, cocktails were once considered medicinal. Of course, in some ways that’s still the case.

Industry author, speaker, and educator Camper English shows us how medicine and alcohol have long been connected throughout human history in Doctors and Distillers. Have you head of using wine as a dewormer? How about treating wounds with beer? Would you ever consider using spirits to heal a snakebite? Well, humans have done those things and more with booze.

Order the paperback today!

Unreasonable Hospitality

Absolutely no disrespect or offense to the authors of Modern Caribbean Rum, this is the title that I thought would take home the Spirited Award. When Will Guidara took over the famous Eleven Madison Park, the restaurant had just two stars and he was only in his mid-twenties. Before his 40th birthday, the changes and strategies he implemented helped the restaurant earn the title of the Best Restaurant in the World.

One of cornerstone’s of Guidara’s was “bespoke hospitality.” He and his team truly went above and beyond. Examples of the Eleven Madison Park team’s approach to hospitality illustrate just how over the top they went to deliver memorable guest experiences. If you’re looking for inspiration to step up your hospitality, pick up or download Unreasonable Hospitality today.

The Power of Habit

This New York Times Bestseller is another book that the KRG Hospitality team has discussed during our company meetings. Developing and understanding of operations and building a world-class team that you lead with empathy and empowerment are important. However, so is developing positive habits in business and in life.

From Amazon: “In The Power of Habit, award-winning business reporter Charles Duhigg takes us to the thrilling edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed. Distilling vast amounts of information into engrossing narratives that take us from the boardrooms of Procter & Gamble to the sidelines of the NFL to the front lines of the civil rights movement, Duhigg presents a whole new understanding of human nature and its potential. At its core, The Power of Habit contains an exhilarating argument: The key to exercising regularly, losing weight, being more productive, and achieving success is understanding how habits work. As Duhigg shows, by harnessing this new science, we can transform our businesses, our communities, and our lives.”

Order the paperback today!

Image: Mikołaj on Unsplash

KRG Hospitality. Bar Consultant. Nightclub. Lounge. Mixology. Cocktails.