Wine – The Book I Wanted To Hate

Vinted on December 5, 2008 binned in book reviews, wine books

I really wanted to hate this book.

I was sent a promotional copy of Wine (edited by Andre Domine, who has authored a number of wine- and culinary-related books), and form the moment that it arrived, I was primed to hate it.

It’s huge. It’s impossible to comfortably read it in bed (trust me, I’ve tried it). At well over 900 pages and what feels like nearly 20 lbs of weight, it seemed better suited to my workout routine crunches than my wine education.

But a funny thing happened on my way to hating this book – I fell in love with it. And now this post is going to be precariously close to sounding like an advertisement for Wine. But I don’t care so much, because the book Rocks…

When I cracked open this book, I was thinking that the world needs another wine reference / introduction / tome like I need a hole in the head.

The first chapter states “Wine… has also become more egalitarian in that never before in its history has such a hige, high-quality range been available to so many people.”

You could say the same thing about wine books, I thought.


The truth is, if you’re a wine novice, you have dozens of decent choices when it comes to finding books to increase your wine know-how. If you’re a wine expert, there are a few key resources that you will undoubtedly tap into from time to time (especially the Oxford Companion). Newcomers to the wine world also have a good many wine resources available to them on the web, and most wine blogs are in some way geared towards the newbie.

Those of you who are past the point of being a beginner, but are not in the trade, or are otherwise someone with an ‘Intermediate’ level of wine knowledge, you have far fewer resources available to you.

Which is why most of you who fall into the “Intermediate” camp will probably dig Wine. It combines lucid and informed writing about all aspects of vino with some beautiful (but mostly functionally relevant) photographs, useful maps, and information on most of the world’s winemaking regions. In a way, it’s a bit like a one-stop-shop combination of the excellent Sotheby’s Wine Encyclopedia and the fabulously-illustrated World Atlas of Wine.

Worth a look – even if you might need to hit the gym and bulk up before being able to lift it…

Cheers!
(images: amazon.com)

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    Comments

  • Joe Roberts, CSW


    For those of you who’ve kindly taken the time to write me emails asking how on earth I could not have been familiar with this book before now, the answer is “I don’t know. Sorry.”

  • Vinogirl


    You are so fair and unbiased…and honest. Who cares if you haven’t come across this book before now.
    Tant pis!
    Keep up the good work.
    Great post.

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