Welcome to Drinking Culture, my weekly newsletter. It will look at the history and culture of alcoholic drinks in particular wine and whisky but as long as it contains alcohol, I’m interested. Booze is a great prism though which to see the past and illuminate culture. The aim is to keep it amusing and stimulating though there may be some controversy too. Stand back!

I’m Henry Jeffreys, an award-winning drinks writer who has written for many publications in Britain and America. I’m currently drinks columnist for The Critic magazine, features editor for the Master of Malt whisky blog and regular contributor to BBC Good Food magazine. I’m the author of four books Empire of Booze: British history through the bottom of a glass (2016), The Home Bar (2018), The Cocktail Dictionary (2020) and the forthcoming Vines in a Cold Climate: the people behind the English wine revolution (published August 2023).

I used to blog at Henry’s World of Booze but this is the place to go for all your drink-soaked content from now on. 

Over the years some very important people have said nice things about me:

“Empire of booze is really really brilliant is you have any interest in drink or history or drink in history, it’s absolutely unmissable.” Tom Holland (the historian not the actor)

"Henry Jeffreys is everything you want a wine writer to be: funny, knowing, unpretentious but also un-blokeish, funny, clever, refreshing, original, funny and inquisitive. And did I say funny?" Craig Brown (the humourist not the former Scotland football manager)

"I am a great admirer of Henry Jeffreys and have been eagerly awaiting his booze and empire book for many years!" --Elif Batuman (the one and only)

If you want to get a flavour of my work, it’s worth listening to the Rest is History podcast I did with Tom Holland and Dominic Sandbrook. 

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A newsletter about alcohol, culture and history.


Henry Jeffreys worked in the wine trade and publishing before becoming a writer. He won Fortnum & Mason Drink Writer of the Year 2022/23 and is the author of four books including Empire of Booze (2016) and Vines in a Cold Climate (2023).