The Tasting Panel magazine

July 2014

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12  /  the tasting panel  / july 2014 INDUSTRY SPOTLIGHT As American as Apple Pie G iving rise to the modern-day craft distilling practices of today, moon- shine—clear, un-aged and potent spirits typically associated with the mountain people of the American South and created from corn at night—has maintained its appeal over the centuries through fact, folklore, and fic- tion. Exploring America's relationship with this boot- legged alcohol, Moonshine: A Cultural History of America's Infamous Liquor by Jaime Joyce (Zenith Press, $25) delves into everything from its fascinating history to its widespread effect on U.S. pop culture. It offers readers a fresh perspective on the profound implications that underground moonshine-making has had on American life as we know it. –Emily Coleman The Ultimate Burger A s the official BBQ and grilling season kicks off, Sutter Home Family Vineyards announced that Michael Cohen from Los Angeles won the $100,000 grand prize of this year's Sutter Home Build a Better Burger Recipe Contest with the Chipotle Bacon Maple Jam Burger, which was also named as the $2,500 People's Choice Award Beef Burger by cook-off attendees. Over the last two decades, the popular recipe contest has collected thousands of mouth-watering burger recipes, allowing Sutter Home to create the BurgerBase, the world's largest collection of burger recipes. Michael edged out his returning finalist father Harold Cohen from Hollywood, Florida who prepared crowd-pleasing Mexicali Burgers. "It was fun competing with my Dad," noted Michael Cohen, "I learned my love of food from him." When asked how he was going to spend the $100,000 prize, Cohen, a composer, answered, "I'm going to start by buying a nice shiny new guitar!" PHOTO: TENLEY FOHL NEW PRODUCT: Gorgeous Vodka P roduced at the Grand Teton Distillery and making its debut in early 2014, gluten-free Gorgeous Vodka is a small batch craft vodka made from 100% hand- picked Idaho potatoes and Rocky Mountain snowcap water. Break Out the Beaker O ffering a unique look into the barrels, stills, tanks and casks, Proof: The Science of Booze by Adam Rogers (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $26) breaks down alcohol to examine its place in human history and soci- ety. It delves into everything from the miracle of yeast to the efforts to quantify what makes a "good" wine to the physiological and psychological experience of drinking. The book also profiles the innovative men and women who are uncovering booze's deepest mysteries. An informative book that makes a wonderful drinking companion.

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