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CHAPTER 5

How to classify cocktails?

A most important chapter in the book, given that classification is the cornerstone of the Sapiens method. This is because it allows us to systematically explore knowledge, then order it, establishing relationships from the data obtained, and, in this way, making the knowledge more serviceable. This matrix can also be used in an inverse way, to analyse an existing elaboration in depth or to create a new one by completing the different aspects with already known variables. Thus, for example, we see that cocktails can be viewed from angles as distinct as the temperature at which they are served, when they are typically consumed or the degree of ephemerality. Classification has also helped indirectly by allowing us to identify gaps and unexplored areas in the discipline. It was through classifying that we came to the conclusion that no relevant examples exist of cocktails in Nouvelle Cuisine and that much work is still to be done concerning aspects such as the ephemeral nature of cocktails.

And, beyond pure research, classification is a useful tool for the design of well balanced cocktail menus, since they help us to evaluate if there is a good distribution of critical variables, such as the main ingredient or the consumption format. Naturally, an experienced reader will understand that the classifications we propose are only a selection of the many potential ones and will use them to create their own classifications (according to criteria of time, cost, etc.)

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