A love of cocktails impelled Cheryl Bisbee, a longtime lawyer, to create her own line of all-natural syrups. At home, she used to try to recreate the complex concoctions that she enjoyed at her favorite Kansas City spots, but something always seemed to be missing. And so, Boozy Botanicals was born. Looking to her backyard for inspiration, Bisbee began developing gourmet syrups using homegrown rosemary and mint for the first test batches. After exploring more combinations of fresh herbs, flowers, vegetables and spices, she chose to bottle seven flavors, including the original rosemary-mint, ginger-hibiscus, cardamom-spice and classic rose.
Besides making home bartending a breeze, Boozy Botanicals can enhance the flavor of marinades, salad dressings, smoothies, baked goods and ice cream, as well as zero-proof drinks such as sparkling water, lemonade and even tea. With no formal training, Bisbee has had to rely on intuition – and some educational reads – to build her business and succeed. Here, she shares two of those books – and one she can’t wait to start.
The Drunken Botanist by Amy Stewart (2013)
“This book is the Bible for me. It was one of the first books I read when I was trying to figure out my product concept for Boozy Botanicals. It taught me just how important – [how] absolutely crucial – plants are to everything we imbibe.”
The Essential Cocktail by Dale DeGroff (2008)
“I know I don’t have to tell you how important DeGroff is to the cocktail [world], and this book encapsulates why. He breaks down the elements of a great cocktail and explains why each is important. He uses lots of history and tells interesting stories and includes lots of recipes. This book really makes you want to start mixing drinks.”
Drinking Like Ladies by Kirsten Amann and Misty Kalkofen (2018)
“I haven’t read this yet, but I’m excited to get into it, as it highlights modern cocktails created by female bartenders and includes stories about women in the industry. I’m really happy this book exists; I don’t think there’s enough love given to women in the [beverage] industry. It’s still quite ‘a man’s world’ – from distilling to distributing to tending bar, the impact and importance of women in the industry is often overlooked.”