American Feast

Cookbooks and Cocktails from the Library of Congress

By Zach Klitzman, Susan Reyburn

American Feast

164 pp., 8 x 8, 151 color images, appends., index

  • Paperback ISBN: 978-0-8444-9583-5
    Published: March 2023

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Distributed for the Library of Congress

Cookbooks offer key insights into what people eat, how they prepare it and share that knowledge, and what kinds of events demand certain dishes. They also tell us how tastes, expectations, and kitchen technology remain or change over time.

American Feast: Cookbooks and Cocktails from the Library of Congress showcases some of the 40,000 books related to cookery in the nation’s library. From the earliest founding-era American household manuals to twenty-first century themed cookbooks and everything in between, this book traces the lip-smacking evolution of American recipes.

And not just food recipes, but cocktail recipes too! For what goes better before, after, or with a delicious meal than the right liquid concoction? The word “cocktail” originated in America, and the Library houses a wide collection of cocktail-related materials as well.

Whether you are a gourmet chef or have never touched a frying pan; whether you are an expert mixologist or don’t know your spritzes from your bitters, you can enjoy this feast of Americana and perhaps find yourself a new signature dish or drink.

About the Series: Collection Close-Ups celebrate the diversity, breadth, and depth of Library of Congress collections by gathering about 100 items around a common theme or set of characteristics. These short, affordable, and accessible books bring Library collections to life through historical anecdotes, colorful images, descriptive captions, and sidebars.

About the Authors

Zach Klitzman is an editorial assistant in the Library of Congress Publishing Office and a former Jeopardy! champion.
For more information about Zach Klitzman, visit the Author Page.

Susan Reyburn is a senior writer-editor in the Library’s Publishing Office. She is the author of the Not an Ostrich Photo Zine, Rosa Parks: In Her Own Words, Football Nation: Four Hundred Years of America’s Game, and co-author of Baseball Americana: Treasures from the Library of Congress.
For more information about Susan Reyburn, visit the Author Page.

Carla D. Hayden is the fourteenth Librarian of Congress.
For more information about Carla D. Hayden, visit the Author Page.