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Chateau Monty Hardcover – 4 Sep 2008


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 298 pages
  • Publisher: Portico; 1st edition (4 Sep 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1906032289
  • ISBN-13: 978-1906032289
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3.3 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 289,106 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

M O N T Y WA L D I N sensed when working as a teenager on a conventionally run Bordeaux château in the mid-1980s that the more industrial sprays were applied to the grapes, the more additives and other corrective treatments were needed subsequently during the winemaking. In the mid-1990s Monty became the first wine writer to specialize in green issues. His first book, The Organic Wine Guide (Thorsons, 1999), published whilst Monty developed a biodiversity project for a Demeter certified biodynamic vineyard in California, was voted Britain's Wine Guide of the Year. He followed this with the multi award-winning Biodynamic Wines (Mitchell Beazley, 2004). Monty drew on his winemaking experiences in Chile for Wines of South America (Mitchell Beazley, 2003), winner of America's prestigious James Beard Book Award. In 2007 whilst living in Roussillon in France, Monty was filmed by Britain's Channel 4 for Château Monty, the first ever observational TV documentary on biodynamic winemaking from pruning to bottling (a six part series broadcast 2008). His other books include Discovering Wine Country: Bordeaux (2005) and Discovering Wine Country: Tuscany (2006), both Mitchell Beazley; and Château Monty (Portico, 2008). Monty has contributed to Hugh Johnson's Pocket Wine Guide (Mitchell Beazley), Tom Stevenson's Wine Report (Dorling Kindersley) and wrote the entries for biodynamics and organics in The Oxford Companion to Wine (ed. Jancis Robinson MW OBE, 2006). He has also contributed to BBC radio and TV, British newspapers (The Independent, London's Evening Standard, Daily Mail), and websites (jancisrobinson.com), as well as to wine, travel and environmental publications including Decanter, Harpers Wine & Spirit Trades Review, World of Fine Wine, The Ecologist, Star & Furrow (journal of the Biodynamic Agricultural Association, UK) and Biodynamics (journal of the Biodynamic Farming & Gardening Association, USA).

Product Description

Review

"His story is informative and fascinating, and it left this reviewer ready to search out biodynamic wines for a tasting." --Kate Turner, for Waterstones Books Quarterly, Winter 2008

"Waldin upped sticks to the Pyrenees...a brave, if slightly bonkers move that's amusingly captured in this entertaining first person account. A funny, down to earth read." --French Magazine, September 2008

About the Author

Monty Waldin is a wine writer and critic, and widely considered THE authority on organic wines and biodynamic winemaking. The author of several books on wine, he currently lives in the south of France.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By L. J. Hardy on 27 April 2013
Format: Hardcover
The day I saw the TV programme reviewed in the Radio Times I was ecstatic! I had walked around that vinyard so many times, sheltered in the same hut that in the TV series Monty converted into a shelter (we all used it as a public loo)and picked several bunches of grapes during my ramblings. I had even helped at a vendage one year as the vinyard had always been organic. I loved the TV series, full of people I knew, absolutely delightful and I cried everytime I saw Canigou in the background.

So, on to the book. Well, what happened to the hardworking assistant? What happened to all the village people who had already kept the vinyard up to scratch until Waldin decided to rent it? In the TV series Eric played a small part but in the book he is the major player. There are several comments that are made in the book which are in error (empty le Vivier properties not having mains water - not so, every property includng empty barns went onto mains water in the 1990's etc)and a better proof reader might have helped with the grammatical errors.

I felt that the book was trying to compete with a Year in Provence but dealing solely with Monty's idea of a biodonamic process. I began to feel a bit frustrated with the idea of a cows horn filled with manure buried in the ground. St Martin has always been the home of best organic small growers and producers of vines around for many miles.

Waldin says in one point that a local for decades was not happy about being told how to attend her allotment and thus avoided him. Well, what a surprise, Monty!

To read this book you really need to be totally into how to grow grapes. And in Monty's way. If you are not it could be very boring.
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Format: Hardcover
I read the book first and then watched the series recently on 4OD, and was also surprised at the presence of his assistant. After seeing his barely concealed antipathy towards her in the show, and her total absence from his book, it seems obvious her presence was at the insistence of Tiger Aspect (producers of countless reality TV shows) to boost the 'drama' (yes, they got some tears out of her). This, plus Geoffrey Palmer's pithy voice-over, made it pretty unwatchable, and I would never have read the book if I'd seen the series first. Shame, because it's an interesting read and I admire his passion for biodynamics even though I don't really buy it.
We did buy some of his first vintage and it was great, especially the white. I read that he stuck with it for a couple more years but only covered his costs and has gone back to writing. Too bad, just shows how tricky it is for small producers, even with the benefit of publicity from a TV show and book.
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By Patsy on 28 Aug 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
excellent read, the book just as good as the TV series
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