In their newly released recipe book, Rocktails: An Amped Up Spin on Mixology,Vol. 1 (Praus Press), mixologists and musicians Kristen Kreft (singer, The Perfect Children) and Mayalou Banatwala (singer, Heavy Hinges) give a history lesson on the musicians who put historic Cincinnati music labels—like King, Federal, Jewel, and Fraternity—on the map.
The writers detail the artists’ ties to the city and hint at how each inspired their bespoke concoction. Pairing 31 artists with curated cocktails, the drinks take cues from song titles, artist names, and lyrics—both from well-known natives (“Bootzilla Collins,” anyone?) and those with more obscure local connections (how about a Nina Simone–inspired “Real Real?”).
The duo’s passion comes through in a tangible way, and the pairings are spot on, like “The Sway” and its muse Rosemary Clooney: a grapefruit-ginger holiday twist on a bourbon-Aperol fizz, garnished with a rosemary sprig pierced through a dried grapefruit wheel. Music lovers should clear a spot on their coffee tables for this addition.
Rocktails: An Amped Up Spin on Mixology, Vol.1 is available at Joseph-Beth Booksellers