Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Bantam; 2nd printing. edition (October 1, 1995)
Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 0.8 x 9 inches
Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #130,471 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #141 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Beverages & Wine > Wine & Spirits > Wine #216 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Beverages & Wine > Homebrewing, Distilling & Wine Making #216 in Books > Reference > Encyclopedias & Subject Guides > Cooking
I received this book while shopping for suits at one of my favorite stores when I lived in Washington, DC. I had, by coincidence, become very interested in wines and had been hanging out at Clevland Partk Wine & Liquor (the BEST wine shop in DC if you are ever there). I began flipping through the book and before long was having intelligent conversations with anyone who would listen about wine. Even now as a (some what) more experienced wine lover, I constantly go back to this book over others that I have acquired since. Fear of Wine is fantastic for anyone, whether they actually do still have a fear of the wine list or are just looking for more information about why the French have such a screwy rating sytem. Interested in wine? GET THIS BOOK!
A friend recommended Fear of Wine to me, since he knew I had recently become interested in the subject. What he told me was true: the book manages to make learning about wine really fun. The author is an anti-snob, and I found her no-nonsense approach to be very appealing; and unlike with the Idiot's and Dummies books, I didn't feel I was being talked down to. (I'm not a moron, are you?) Although I thought the book was great all the way through, the sections on ordering wine in restaurants and buying wine for home were particularly strong. Also, as a person who was only familiar with California wines, and especially Chardonnay and Merlot, the book was terrific at untangling French, Italian, and other European wines, opening up a whole new world to me, and also introducing me to other American varieties. And it seems the book isn't only great for beginners--I gave it as a gift to a friend who actually knows quite a bit about wine, and she can't stop raving about it either!
This book has a good overview of many subjects, but tends to try to answer so many questions too quickly. The early section on making wine is good, but I felt like I was taking a 3-hour tour of San Francisco. Granted that the subtitle is "an introductory guide to the grape", it could have been less rushed and used the same amount of space. The sections on the different AVAs are excellent -- some of the best informative condensed coverage that I have read. The list of preferred producers of each type is very good, without tying down to specific prices or vintages. The brief list of 10-bottle and 20-bottle starter collections at the back is very helpful (and very similar to what I started with!). Good book. The informative casual cartoons convinced me to change it from four stars to five stars.
This book gives a great overview of all types of wine, going methodically from grape to grape, region to region. It also gives practical advice for every situation, from wine tasting to shopping for wines to ordering in restaurants to matching with food. But the best part is the approach: It completely dispels the mythology surrounding wine and brings it back down to the simple fact that it's fermented grape juice. It is completely devoid of pretention or pomposity. At the same time, it makes very clear that wine is thoroughly enjoyable and can improve your life. I constantly refer to it, and each time I open it up I learn something.
This is perfect as a "first wine book." It is funny, reasurring yet packed with information. I have read it over and over many times and given it to friends who have asked how I became "so knowlegable about wine". If you have ever enjoyed a glass of wine and wanted to know more but were afraid to ask this book is for you
Similar in approach to the "dummies" books, this one brings a more adult approach without sliding into dullness or snobbery. Lightened by Teague's cartoons, it offers a noteworthy introduction to the wine hobby
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