Book Reviews

Book Review: Proof

Alcohol in most of the 200 plus sovereign countries all over the world is widely produced, consumed, and often abused.

Beer is the most popular of all alcoholic beverages followed by wine, and spirits.

While spirits generate more revenue for producers, middlemen, retailers and governments, the whole alcohol producing enterprises represent significant incomes to government treasuries everywhere.

The author puts human alcohol industry under the microscope, from the accidental discovery of fermentation to distillation, and all the

research surrounding consumption.

Alcohol consumption leads to happiness and health, but also to misery and sickness. Then author points out repeatedly that it is the dosage that determines the outcome.

You won’t find cocktail recipes in great numbers, but a few are mentioned in passing.

It is a book on the science of alcohol, and what it does to societies.

Some countries control sales by monopolies owned and operated by them, and tax heavily, claiming that excess taxation deters excessive drinking. There is no definitive proof of this claim. Government justify high taxes claiming that alcoholics treated by the government funded health systems “eat up” tax revenue. This has been proven wrong in many jurisdictions.

Adam Rogers explains and provides the history in each of the eight chapters, starting with yeast, sugar, and fermentation, following up with distillation, aging, smell and taste, body and brain, and hangover.

Each chapter provides in-depth information based on extensive and in-depth research based on lucid compilation on the latest information available.

This is an incredibly engaging book, immensely pleasurable to read, and highly informative for all drinkers and non-drinkers alike.

Parents of preteen children would benefit greatly from the information that they can use to persuade their offspring about alcohol’s benefits, and damage if abused.

One aspect that the author has neglected (rightly or wrongly) is graphic and visual supplements, which would have made the narrative more useful for those who relate to such presentations.

This book should be mandatory reading to all hotel and restaurant management students all over the world, who eventually will have to deal with incoherent, or comatose guests!

The chapter on how alcohol affects the brain (especially developing brains) is highly interesting and valuable for all.

Highly recommended.

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