A vivid, funny, and poignant memoir that celebrates the distinct lure of the camaraderie and community one finds drinking in bars.
Rosie Schaap has always loved bars: the wood and brass and jukeboxes, the knowing bartenders, and especially the sometimes surprising but always comforting company of regulars. Starting with her misspent youth in the bar car of a regional railroad, where at fifteen she told commuters’ fortunes in exchange for beer, and continuing today as she slings cocktails at a neighborhood joint in Brooklyn, Schaap has learned her way around both sides of a bar and come to realize how powerful the fellowship among regular patrons can be.
In Drinking with Men, Schaap shares her unending quest for the perfect local haunt, which takes her from a dive outside Los Angeles to a Dublin pub full of poets, and from small-town New England taverns to a character-filled bar in Manhattan’s TriBeCa. Drinking alongside artists and expats, ironworkers and soccer fanatics, she finds these places offer a safe haven, a respite, and a place to feel most like herself. In rich, colorful prose, Schaap brings to life these seedy, warm, and wonderful rooms. Drinking with Men is a love letter to the bars, pubs, and taverns that have been Schaap’s refuge, and a celebration of the uniquely civilizing source of community that is bar culture at its best.
""Schaap brings a poet's touch to her memoir, which brims with insight and wisdom.""
“This book will be a classic. There is so much joy in this book! It’s a great, comforting, wonderful, funny, inspiring, moving memoir about community and belief and the immense redemptive powers of alcohol drunk properly.”
—Kate Christensen, author of In the Drink and The Great Man
""There are bar stories and there are coming-of-age stories. And then there is Rosie Schaap's thoughtful and funny chronicle that reminds us of all the drinks, dives, and deep conversations that helped make us who we are. This is a wise, engaging memoir.""
—Wendy McClure, author of The Wilder Life and I’m Not the New Me
“A witty homage to pubs and bars and the regulars who call them home.”
“[Schaap] describes the unusual camaraderie among bar ‘regulars’ with poignant specificity. It’s a cozy, intimate pleasure to go belly-to-bar with her.”
""With focused premise and expansive feeling... [and] very smart assessments of a mode of being that’s not given the credit it deserves. 'Drinking With Men' would pair very well this time of year with a well-aged whiskey and a handful of peanuts.""
—The Boston Globe
“A wonderfully funny and openhearted book from a generous, charismatic writer… [Schaap is] a born storyteller… There's no substitute for the kind of community you can find in a good tavern. And no American writer can explain it better than Rosie Schaap.”
“Rosie Schaap’s New York Times column on the pleasures of drinking has always been—like the best bartenders—funny, smart, and slightly bawdy. This memoir is also all those things—and there’s no hangover.”
“[Schaap] has a way with words, writing about her experiences in the bars of her life in a heartfelt, honest, and relatable way. I would like to request a drink pairing with each chapter.”
—The Atlantic Wire
“Ms. Schaap has a gift for camaraderie—and excellent taste in booze.”
—New York Observer
“Pour yourself a double and let Schaap’s writing amuse and enchant you.”