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How to Love Wine: A Memoir and Manifestoby Eric Asimov
Synopses & Reviews
For many people, wine is an anxiety-inducing mystery as arcane as quantum physics, and with so many varieties, it's difficult to know what to choose. As New York Times wine critic Eric Asimov argues, that puzzling uncertainty often prevents people from buying and ordering wine, depriving them of an exquisite, deeply satisfying experience.
In How to Love Wine, Asimov examines why the American wine culture produces such feelings of anxiety and suggests how readers can overcome their fears and develop a sense of discovery and wonder as they explore the diversity and complexity of the world of wine. With warmth, candor, and intelligent authority, Asimov interweaves his professional knowledge and insights with engaging personal stories of his love affair with wine, a lifelong passion that began when he was a graduate student on a budget.
In a direct, down-to-earth manner, Asimov discusses favorite vineyards, wine's singular personalities, the "tyranny of tasting notes"—those meaningless, overwritten wine descriptions that often pass for criticism today—and current wine issues.
Throughout, he incorporates in-depth discussions of beautiful wines, both easy to find and rare, and pays special attention to those that have been particularly meaningful to him. Thought-provoking and enjoyable, How to Love Wine will help diminish readers' anxiety, bolster their confidence, and transform them into true wine lovers.
"Forget the snooty trappings of wine connoisseurship — just drink up and enjoy, argues this simultaneously down-to-earth and romantic meditation. New York Times wine critic Asimov (The New York Times Guide to Restaurants) confronts an alleged crisis of 'wine anxiety' among the untutored with a clashing blend of common sense and mysticism. He gives straightforward advice on self-education — drink many affordable wines and take notes on what you like — and pithily skewers the 'taste notes' style of wine writing, with its litanies of arcane aromas that proclaim expertise while conveying no information. Unfortunately, his own attempts to peer into the soul of wines and find their sublime connections to terroir can at times be just as nebulous: one wine he condemns for its 'spiritless flaccidity,' another he praises as 'luminous and pure, delicate but not fragile.' But Asimov sprinkles in lively reminiscences of his journalism career and the idiosyncratic culture of wine cognoscenti, and enchants and reassures by his warm savoring of the drinking experience." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Eric Asimov, the acclaimed chief wine critic for the New York Times, has written a beautiful and thought-provoking combination memoir and manifesto, How to Love Wine.
With charm, wit, and intelligence, Asimov tells how he went from writing beer reviews for his high school newspaper on Long Island to the most coveted job in the industry. He evaluates the current wine culture, discussing trends both interesting and alarming, and celebrates the extraordinary pleasures of wine while, at the same time, questioning the conventional wisdom about wine.
Whether youre a connoisseur or a novice, already love wine or want to know it better, How to Love Wine: A Memoir and Manifesto is the book for you.
About the Author
Eric Asimov is the chief wine critic of the New York Times, where his weekly column appears in the Dining section. He is married to Deborah Hofmann, has two sons, Jack and Peter, and lives in Manhattan.
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