Book Club

Buzzworthy: Cocktails Inspired by Female Literary Greats

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There’s nothing better than sharing a good book with a good drink. Inspired by such pairings, mixologist and writer Jennifer Croll has created buzzworthy cocktails inspired by today’s literary greats. The fifty recipes in this volume are as unconventional, imaginative, and refreshing as the authors that inspired them. Each double-page spread includes an illustration of one important woman writer along with fascinating background about her oeuvre, personality, and points of literary distinction. And, of course, each profile is paired with a delicious recipe for a fitting cocktail. Pulling from every category—literary and genre fiction, poetry, graphic novels, essays and nonfiction— this book offers some surprising twists as well as old favorites. While each subject could provide hours of cocktail chatter, the recipes themselves are also a unique conversation starter: the Virginia Woolf—a peach-and-mint creation with a modernist flair; the Octavia Butler—an uncompromising blend featuring bourbon and port; and the Jia Tolentino—a purple sparkler that puts a cerebral twist on pop culture.

illustrated by Rachelle Baker

The book finishes with a TBR List, an edited collection of recommended reads that are easily available to purchase, in case the cocktails weren‘t enough to quench your literary thirst. Perfect for literary-themed parties as well as intimate gatherings, this book itself is an intoxicating, lip-loosening brew made of equal parts sophistication and fun.

Here’s a couple of our favourite recipes from the book with a bit more about the Author who inspired it.

The Rupi Kaur

  • 2 shots gin
  • 1 shot of fresh lemon juice.
  • 1⁄2 shot yellow Chartreuse.
  • 1⁄2 shot honey syrup*

Garnish: 2 small sunflowers

Add all ingredients to a shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously and fine strain into a coupe glass. Garnish.

*Honey Syrup: Combine equal parts honey and hot (not boiling) water. Stir until combined.

Rupi Kaur transformed poetry into a pop culture phenomenon that can pack theatres with thousands of fans.

Growing up in Canada as a shy child and speaking English as a second language, the India-born Kaur had a hard time making friends.  Discovering poetry gave her a voice and she began performing spoken word as a teenager. Addressing emotionally raw topics such as trauma and abuse, self-care, acceptance and healing, her delicately illustrated verses attracted thousands of followers.

As an “Instapoet” who crafts simple verse that taps into readers’ emotions and who leverages social media to find her audience, Kaur is undeniably modern, and unlike most poets, she’s ascended to mainstream celebrity. Reflecting her generational importance to Millennial readers, she was deemed “Writer of the Decade” by The New Republic.

The cocktail dedicated to Kaur is a sunny yellow and finds its sweetness from a touch of honey.


The Susan Sontag

2 shots white rum

• 2 shots unsweetened coconut cream

• 1 shot hibiscus syrup*

• 1 shot fresh lime juice

• 4 1-inch chunks of pineapple

• 2 large sliced strawberries

• 4 large ice cubes

Garnish: hibiscus flowers, sliced strawberries, and pineapple leaves.

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into a pineapple-shaped glass, garnish, and serve with a striped paper straw.

*Hibiscus Syrup: In a small saucepan, simmer basic simple syrup and ½ cup dried hibiscus flowers for 5 minutes or until liquid is a deep magenta. Strain and allow to cool.

Susan Sontag is an Essayist, critic, and novelist who transformed aesthetics and popular culture into topics worthy of intellectual pursuit.

Sontag spent her time at the library in the company of books. She graduated from high school at 16, and then attended UC Berkeley and the University of Chicago. There, at age 17, she met a professor named Philip Rieff and married him 10 days later. After pursuing graduate degrees in English and philosophy and having a son with Rieff, Sontag sought a divorce and moved to New York with only a couple of suitcases. In New York, Sontag taught at universities while writing and, in 1964, published an essay, “Notes on ‘Camp,’” which immediately and irrevocably launched her into fame. It examines an aesthetic sensibility rooted in the embrace of artifice and exaggeration, which, until Sontag’s essay came out, was largely only understood by the gay community.

The cocktail dedicated to Sontag takes its notes from camp, about which she said: “The hallmark of camp is the spirit of extravagance.”


JENNIFER CROLL is a writer whose work has appeared in a variety of publications including Nylon and Dazed & Confused. Her previous books with Prestel include Free the Tipple, Dressed to Swill, and Fashion That Changed the World.

RACHELLE BAKER is a multi-disciplinary artist. Her past illustrated books include Shirley Chisholm Is a Verb and The Motherlode: 100+ Women Who Made Hip-Hop. She has worked with clients such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, Netflix, MTV, Adidas, and The New Yorker.

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