For a near novice to wine this was a great buy. It gives a comprehensive guide to, as it says in the title, everything the novice wine lover needs to know in a clear, concise and non-patronising way. After reading I feel much more informed and relatively confident when browsing the wine shelf (and even enough to venture into a wine merchants). The 'ones to watch out for' notes have been particularly useful. The only downside regards the kindle edition, it's a book to flick through and come back to certain parts which is difficult with the kindle edition. As with the Bluffer's Guide to Wine, I would recommend the paper edition of this.
I found this a very helpful little book which gives a good account of the basics of wine without being patronising or pompous. I suspect that I'm like quite a few people who might be considering this book - I'm not a wine expert by any means, but I have picked up some knowledge of grapes, countries and regions and so on - and I found that it filled in a lot of the gaps in my knowledge and has some really useful information in an accessible and easy-to-use format.
The book covers the basics of how wine is made, from the growing of the grapes to the bottling and ageing and gives an overview of the way in which the climate and "terroir" of a region and the techniques of winemaking can affect the taste of the wine. There is a pretty comprehensive list of grape varieties with their characteristics and sections on how to chose, store and enjoy wine, all full of useful guidance - particularly the section on pairing wine with food - and some basics of buying wine and cooking with wine. The major section of the book, though, is "Wine Regions of the World," which I thought was very good. It gives, country by country, a brief but informative guide to the various regions with a guide to their main characteristics and some suggestions of "One to watch" producers. To be able to look up easily a little bit of information about an obscure Portuguese region, for example, or to have a simple guide to the labyrinthine appellation systems of Bordeaux or Burgundy is a real bonus for me and I found this a really helpful section.
It's a very handy and easy book to refer to and the pocket-size format does mean that if you wish you can easily take this little book with you when you might be buying wine, which is a useful feature. The "Bible" in the title is a very exaggerated claim, but I'd certainly recommend it to anyone who drinks wine and would like a simple, practical and pretty comprehensive guide to augment their knowledge.
The style of this small book is not dissimilar to all those mountains of books which inevitably come out every Christmas trying to cash in on the success of Schott's Almanac. However, unlike many of those pieces of useless gift tat, this actually serves as a good introduction to learning more about wine for those who know little or nothing to begin with and would like to know a bit more, and avoids the snobbery surrounding the subject from many quarters. For those with a bit of knowledge some of it may seem too simplistic however.
Topics covered include: a brief history of winemaking and how wine is made; varieties of grape (necessarily this only covers the most common); winemaking regions of the world (the largest section of the book); enjoying wine (looking, smelling, tasting and describing); wine and food (some basic principles of wine and food matching, ordering wine in restaurants, cooking with wine); buying wine (reading lables, where to buy wine); storing wine; and wine and health.
Five stars for fulfilling the purpose of a good introduction for beginners, but as noted above probably would not make a great gift for those of a more intermediate level.
The wine pocket Bible is another book in the "Pocket Bibles" series and is indeed a winner covering all aspects of wine lore in a easy to read and well formatted styler.
Following on from an introduction which itself looks at the history of wine. From here the book itself is in a number of sections; each discussing wine from a different perspective.
The first section of the book covers all aspects of making wine from growing grapes (of all varieties) all the way to fermentation and blending of the finished product to produce particular styles. These chapters go very nicely with the next section which looks at different regions of the world discussing the characteristic styles of wines produced in different regions. This section makes up the largest section of the book by far; understandably since there are a lot of wine making regions in the world.
We then get to perhaps the most important part of the and whilst one might think that wine is easy to enjoy; simply pop open a bottle and guzzle down the contents; there are actually a range of details which when followed makes for a more enjoyable drink. Here we discuss how to look at the wine; noting features such as colour, aroma and "legs". Logically enough the next stage of the book describes wines most important bedfellow - Food; discussing what wines are good with what foods. Finally the book details how to buy and store wine.
In all, I found this book to be very informative and easy to read. I'll certainly be keeping a copy in my pocket when I visit a wine shop ready for Christmas in a few weeks
This is only a small hardback, but a really handy one to have around if you're a lover of wine.
It has eight chapters that are really well put together. They focus on the following:
1. How wine is made 2. Varieties of grape 3. Wine regions of the world 4. Enjoying wine 5. Wind and food 6. Buying wine 7. Storing wine 8. Wine and health
As you can see from the contents of the book above, this small book covers the majority of what you need to know about wine. I learnt quite a few things from it, and more so than some of the more complex books on wine from some well known authors. What I like about the book is that it is a really easy book to pick up and have a quick 'flick through' to find a little nugget of wine knowledge. If you have ever read Ben Schott's 'Food and Drink Miscellany' you'll be right at home with this book as they are similarly put together.
I really like this book, i refer to it as a quick reference, i read it for a bit more wine knowledge but most of all, I like it for what it is - a well put together comprehensive small book on wine.
I'm not interested in wines of the world at all, especially because of some of the prices. But this makes an exception becuase it is small, easy to read and packed full of useful information from the best conditions to make your own wine and a list of every type of wine and what grape goes into it. If this sounds boring still gove this a try because it is overall a very nicely presented book with some humour mixed in.
But I suppose this is made especially for the wine novice, in which case it is excellent because it gives you all you'd need to start off and I never thought I'd be saying this but the chapter on the 'Brief history of wine' was quite interesting. The section on the different wine regions of the woorld is also very interesting, so definately take this with you if you're planning to go on a first wine trip or something!
This is very much a dip in dip out book, which is well indexed. You can, if the feeling takes you, read it from cover to cover, but you'll probably find yourself, like I did, holding a bottle in one hand and the book in the other, trying to make sense of what you were drinking (and inevitably being disappointed).
I found the topics on grapes and regions particularly interesting and the notes on which varieties go well with certain foods was very useful. I'd say this book is pitched at those who enjoy wine but know (like me) little to nothing about it. If you have a vague idea and can tell your burgundy from bordeaux then it's probably going to be a little bit light weight for you (with a slight hint of rose petals).
I know really little about wine or it's background. Well I did until read this super book. As a very basic introduct to wines it is perfect. The reader is taken through the history of wine and the major wine producing parts of the world.
The wines names and types I have found to be very useful.
There are tips on how to enjoy wine and even the heath benefts.
While this book may not be much use to anyone who knows just a little about wine for the complete beginner like me it is just right. The small pocket size is also very helpful.