The first in a series of videos discussing my book, Menno-Nightcaps.

I discuss the genesis of my book, Menno-Nightcaps, Cocktails Inspired by that Odd Ethno-Religious Group You Keep Mistaking for the Amish, Quakers or Mormons (Touchwood, 2021).

Music: The 606 Rag, composed and performed by Ed Heese
Videography: David Brulé


[Music] Hi, I’m Sherri Klassen, author of Menno-Nightcaps: Cocktails Inspired by that Odd Ethno-Religious Group You Keep Mistaking for the Amish, Quakers or Mormons.

It’s published by Touchwood Editions and it’s set to come out in September, 2021, just in time for Mennonite Heritage Week.

So, the origins of the book go back to 2013 when I was just wandering about the internet, as one does, and I came upon cocktail blogs. They were sort of new at the time and they were throwing around the term, “cocktail renaissance.” And I thought, “Renaissance?!?”

What we need is a cocktail RADICAL REFORMATION.

So I started my own blog.

I also wanted to be writing about Mennonite things so I put the two together and it became the Drunken Menno blog.

Now in 2013, everyone was talking about how blogging was done and over with; it was sort of over the hill. Luckily, I was writing for a Mennonite audience and we’re notoriously behind the times so that wasn’t a problem at all.

The blog has long, rambling discussions of all sorts of things about Mennonites – about our history and our culture and some are personal stories about my own life living as a Mennonite. And then it’s got a cocktail recipe attached to it, of course. Like I said, a cocktail radical reformation.

Pretty soon after I started doing the blog people told me, “oh you should do a book” and I thought, “you know, come on.”

I thought they were joking because, you know, a Mennonite cocktail book seemed like a rather unlikely book to come about. But they kept saying it and honestly I still think that people were joking when they said it but eventually I decided to start pitching it to publishers and here we are today with the book
coming out and actually it’s been a lot of fun putting it together with the team at Touchwood.

It’s a little different from the blog. The recipes are better for one thing – honestly when I made  the blog – whatever was the theme of the blog, I would just kind of put some ingredients together and give it a name, throw some rhubarb in it and call it mennonite.

So for the book , I took took the recipes a little more seriously. I did find out through the blog that people were actually starting to make the recipes so I thought okay I should do some good cocktails and a few of them in the blog are good. I wouldn’t say that they’re all bad but the ones in the book have definitely all been tested not just by me, also by at least one or two other people and so the recipes are better and the ramblings are shorter.

I ramble a little bit less. I tend to have like the little paragraph about each of the topics that are in the book — again they cover history and culture and more history and religion. and yeah so one little topic and a little paragraph about it and then a recipe and I don’t know; I mean, I like to think that there are people who really want to hear me rambling and so that’s why I’m making these videos and also there’s still the blog. If you really want to see rambling, you can go to the blog as a kind of companion to the more “refined” version that you’ll find in the cocktail book.

It’s still funny.  I like to think it’s still funny. And there’s cute little punny names for each of the cocktails

Okay so that’s it for today. I’m going to do some more videos coming up when I talk about each of the sections of the book and also some of my own background as a Mnnonite writing about cocktails.

I’ll talk to you later