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Jancis Robinson's Concise Wine Companion [Paperback]

Jancis Robinson
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Mar 2001
Enjoyment of wine is not just a matter of knowing what you like - it is always enhanced by knowledge of what you are drinking. This text presents a distillation of all the essential information for wine-lovers and would-be wine-lovers, drawn from the author's "Oxford Companion to Wine". The text contains over 2350 fully cross-referenced entries on all aspects of wine including regions, tasting terms, labelling, health, grape varieties, and faults.

Product details

  • Paperback: 608 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (Mar 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0198662742
  • ISBN-13: 978-0198662747
  • Product Dimensions: 19.5 x 12.9 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 948,416 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

About the Author

Jancis Robinson is a wine writer and broadcaster with an international reputation. She was Decanter magazine's 1999 (Wo)Man of the Year. She was also voted first ever Television Personality of the Year in the 1999 Glenfiddich Awards for food and drink media. In the same year her fellow wine writers voted her Most Influential Wine Writer by an overwhelming margin. She has been a columnist for both The Sunday Times of London and the American Wine Spectator
and now writes for The Financial Times as well as a column which is published by 12 magazines in five continents.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Portable version of a wine-publishing classic 27 Mar 2001
By A Customer
Most wine geeks will be familiar with the Oxford Companion to Wine, the second edition of which was released back in 1999. Along with Hugh Johnson's Wine Atlas, this is one of the classic texts that should be on every wine lover's bookshelf. Well, the concise wine companion has some 2350 of the entries from the Oxford Companion included in its 559 pages, and from leafing through the entries it's hard to see what's missing -- there are no noticeable omissions (the preface mentions that only two subject areas -- distilled and fortified wine -- have been omitted or substantially cut). The cross-referenced entries are well enough written, in a semi-formal, economical and precise 'lexicographer-speak' language to make casual browsing worthwhile. Maybe I'm an unredeemable anorak, but I spent a happy couple of hours just reading from one entry to another. So, if you already possess the Oxford Companion, should you purchase this book? I'd say yes, for one key reason -- portability. You can fit this book in your briefcase or find space for it on your desktop, whereas its hardback predecessor is an unwieldy doorstop of a book. If you don't already have a copy of the Oxford Companion, then the decision to buy this is a bit of a no-brainer... Faults? Well, the cover design looks a bit 1970s: it is split vertically, with a weakly smiling, slightly embarrassed-looking editor on one side and the obligatory wine glass shot on the other. But we can forgive this, because this is such a useful, well-written book.
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6 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a wine anorak's delight; perfect for the beach 6 Dec 2001
By A Customer
You can either use this book to look up specific words on the wine label, or you can browse generally and educate yourself. Zinfandel is the same as Primitivo; never knew that. Rosemount has declined; confirmed what I thought myself. Excellent; perfect to take on holiday with the A-Z of medicine or the Football Handbook.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5.0 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Way More User Friendly...... 5 Dec 2004
By Less Oake - Published on
Than the "Big Bruiser," coffee-table version....and much more functional wine education tool because, in my view, while slightly less info-packed, the smaller, more handy format makes it more likely that you'll pick it up more frequently to "graze" the treasure trove of facts contained therein.

Also: the CWC's alphabetical, encyclopedic layout makes it easy to cross-index & reference.

Truly a "must have" for any serious wine afficianado!
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good wine book 13 Nov 2013
By Michael Sassenoff - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A real easy to use wine guide from someone who has spent their life learning and instructing about wine. Very useful!
5.0 out of 5 stars For a concise wine reference, this has a lot of stuffing! 4 Mar 2013
By Christopher Barrett - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
It's not as thorough as the full size Oxford Wine Companion of course. But lugging the 800+ page Oxford is a workout. This small, handy little mini reference has pretty much most wine topics covered. It doesn't have the extra descriptions, history, drawings, or photos that the larger book contains, but there are brief entries about most things wine. As long as they aren't too uncommon.

For example, if you want to glance at a brief description of anthocyanin, it's here. TCA? Check. But if you want the production figures for grenache gris in California? Not happening. Also many of the specific wineries aren't listed. So a particular winery that might appear in the Oxford due to a historical significance probably won't pop up here.

The brief descriptions for the terms and such are very nice, and it's a handy book to have along just to check into if need be. If you are studying at home for a wine exam, the Oxford is much better. But if you have a few minutes down time at your retail wine shop or your restaurant this could be a handy little book to peruse a few choice topics. Also great if you have someone with a question and you want to reference something. Or if a vendor brings in some info and you want to check into something further.

I actually used this book to show a restaurant customer what tartrate crystals were since he was trying to return a nearly finished bottle of high end California chardonnay saying there was something in it and it 'tasted bad'. So I had to show the description for our tiny little, glass shard appearing, tasteless, odorless crystals of tartaric acid. Saved our restaurant $80.
5.0 out of 5 stars I found her again! 12 Jun 2010
By J. Garcia - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I lost my copy that a friend had given me and was delighted that I could find a copy available from a second party. This book is needed for anyone who enjoys wine. I just wish Jancis would make this into an App for my iPhone. Now that would be truly amazing!
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