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The Wine Savant: A Guide to the New Wine Culture Hardcover – 28 Jan 2014

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Product Description


"Deftly shows how any and all of us can be savvier about wine." -- Bill Ward

About the Author

Michael Steinberger is a James Beard Foundation Journalism Award winner and the author of Au Revoir to All That: Food, Wine, and the End of France. He has written for the New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, and Vanity Fair and is the wine writer for Men's Journal. Previously, he was the wine columnist for Slate.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 12 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
One of the most refreshing, unpretentious, and informative books on today's wine scene 8 Dec. 2013
By Phil28 - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I read many wine books to learn and make better choices. I found this book to be one of the most refreshing, readable and informative of any wine book I've read over the past year or two. Steinberger does a great job of commenting and explaining his thoughts on a wide range of contemporary topics. Everything from wine glasses to the Parkerization of wine (of whom he's no fan). He discusses his favorite wineries (Santa Cruz Mtn in CA), explains biodynamics, the changing role of sommeliers and why matching wine to food is becoming such a challenge. The writing is breezy and unpretentious and fun. Steinberger seems like someone you'd like to meet and share a bottle of wine with.

Some of the content was taken from the author's writing on Slate, but I never knew of it and the book flows well, not as just compendium of columns. The book is relatively short, 175 pp, but I learned more from this book than many much bigger.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Fun and Informative Read (with great Lists) 21 Dec. 2013
By Sutton Faller - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is written for both oenophiles and those of us who just want to know more about wine. It is not a primer on wine, its a deliciously opinionated assessment of the current state of the wine industry (see previous review for detail on content). Steinberger completely rags on over-priced Bordeaux, but instead of leaving it at that, offers lots of great suggestions for better picks (focusing on affordable $20ish wines!!). To support his claims, he provides interesting history of various wines, and little factoids that, yes, I will steal to amaze my friends and colleagues :-).

One really nice thing he offers in the book is lists of suggested wines - by type, and a great list of 50 wines that should be on your bucket list. This is particularly nice to have if you get the Kindle version - just call it up next time you're at the wine store. The book also has one of the most detailed Indexes I've ever seen - great for referencing. I'm not a wine savant, so I have no clue whether his recommendations are good, but given his bio in the back of the book, it appears he has the chops to make such bold assertions.

Even if I weren't interested in wine, I think I'd like reading this book because of the author's brash yet self-deprecating attitude, combined with his wicked vocabulary. I found myself smiling throughout the book as he whipped out words, phrases, and puns that I haven't come across in years. I'm guessing that's an occupational hazard for wine guys.

Overall, a fun read with great information and it'll pay for itself with the next couple of bottles I buy!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A breezy, fun, and fulfilling read! 26 Dec. 2013
By Phillip W. De Vous - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A great informative brief on the world of wine. I like the fact he recognizes that French viticulture remains the ontological standard of wine while recognizing globalization is creating new centers of excellence and altering global palates.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
So great 24 April 2014
By Review - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
One of the best wine guides ever written, and funny, too. I absolutely love it. It's really helpful whether you're buying wine in a store or ordering it in a restaurant. Highly recommend it!
Excellent book! 25 Jun. 2014
By Arnar Sigurdsson - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Quite different than most other books in this field, touching upon lot of subjects, all highly relevant to every wine savant, well written and entertaining.
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