Posts Tagged ‘Tom Standage’
This is light, though not an easy read. It is literally the history of the world through the six beverages, beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea and coca cola. Like the other members of our book club, I found the concept of charting history through these drinks unique and plausible. I did find it difficult to read in the beginning and must confess, if not for the book club, I would have given up half way through the first chapter on beer. I persevered, and was glad I did as it did ‘pick up’ although not greatly. I found the stories of great thinkers such as Plato coming together in Symposiums, which developed all around the world as a result of new beverages, very interesting. For me, the chapter on Tea was the most captivating. This is probably because, 1) I am a devoted tea drinker 2) The beginning of Twinnings Tea to fulfil the gap in providing women ‘access’ to the equivalent of coffee houses, was just remarakable. The different civilisations, the ‘great powers’, the (British) East India Trading Company as well as the Opium Wars, were interesting to read about through this different approach to history. It is a book that made me feel pleased that I had read it, once I had finished it.