It's called the noble spirit and king of brandies--and who better to explain why than the celebrated bartender and world expert on cognac? This royal drink is his obsession, and before you're through with these elegantly illustrated, information-filled pages, it will be yours, too. Calabrese introduces the leading families and houses in the business and, decade by decade, gives the fascinating, sinful, and seductive history of cognac. Here, too, are the personal stories of those in the small area in France who produce the golden liquid, a summary of the distillation process from grape to cask to bottle, tasting notes for a selection of the finest vintages, tips of the trade, and handsome photography. An insightful reflection on a very special liquor. Salvatore Calabrese is Bar Manager at the prestigious Lanesborough Hotel in London. Well known throughout the world as an author, cognac expert, and creator of many unique drinks, he is one of only a few experts on vintage cognac. Among the many honors he has received are The Campari Bartender of the Year award; the Chevalerie du Verre Galant, the Chevalier l'Ordre des Côteaux de Champagne, and winner of the Lea & Perrins International Healthy Cocktails Competition. His books include the bestseller Classic Cocktails, which has sold more than 150,000 copies.