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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on October 16, 2009
At first, i thought the book was too negative, and actually discouraging to winery-ownership aspirations("You can make a small fortune in the wine business, provided you begin with a large one." HA HA). But as I read other books, I realized the author's purpose: There were just too many people gettin' into the "wine biz" for purely romantic reasons, without an ounce of outdoor/ag/technical/marketing knowledge. It's not hard to "love" wine; many people do. Neither is it hard to love fast cars, but I wouldn't think of operating a sports car dealership. And yes, from first-hand experience, it is VERY expensive to start up a winery. For anyone considering getting into the winery business, this book is worth buying even if only for the wonderful Appendix: an excellent collection of forms, worksheets & resources that every winery operator, or anyone thinking of owning a winery, should definitely include in their personal library.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon November 16, 2009
Okay, first off, ignore the silly title. There are good "Complete Idiot's" and "Dummies" books and not so good ones. This is a good one. The best book, and certainly the most complete book, I've seen on the business side of starting a winery. I'd recommend other books on wine making (including the excellent The Way to Make Wine: How to Craft Superb Table Wines at Home which bridges the home winemaking and small winery divide) but if you're serious about a winery, going to a couple of books is hardly a major problem.

The book is well-written, clear, and informative. Alas, my recommendation would carry more weight if I've opened a winery and made a profit, but so far this book falls into the informational category for me.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on February 26, 2009
Despite the title, (a common curse with this series) this is a workable reality check for the would be winemaker. There is little actual discussion of technique, but there are many other sources for that. This is more a discussion of what elements would have to be in place for a new venture to be successful.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on November 29, 2010
Starting a winery is not for the faint of heart or light of wallet. Pellechia does a first rate job within the formula of the Guide of explaining the how and the what of starting a winery. The benefit of his own experience, as well as his knowledge of wine, shows through on every page.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This book is for those who want to make wine as a way to earn a living. Passion is fine, but it is not enough in the competitive and resource-intensive wine business; Pellechia's book tells you why, and he shows you how to go about establishing a viable winery that has a chance at satisfying your passion and making a profit.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on November 8, 2014
I have read a small number of books and articles about the costs and challenges in opening and running a winery, and this one, to date, provided me with the most thorough overview of what to expect. I learned things in this book that I had not come across elsewhere. The small glimpses into the real-world cost structures of the wine business were particularly enlightening. There is one high-level case study in particular that was a real treat to read, and I was left wishing that the book had contained a larger quantity of very hard data and/or case studies. There is an attempt to be general enough so that someone in the Finger Lakes region will get as much out of the book as someone in Paso Robles, and I believe that this desire for universality prevents the author from going too deep into specific numbers and challenges.

Despite the stigma carried by the Idiot's brand, I am really glad I bought this book and expect to be re-reading it a few times throughout my journey.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on April 13, 2013
This book is very informative and objective, and provides good advice to a beginner who may know nothing about the industry.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 8, 2014
I'm writing a novel about a woman who knows nothing of wine (like me!) and inherits a winery. I bought this book for research. It was very helpful, starting with the basics, and keeping it simple for the non-business oriented potential owner. Many of these books are so fact-filled as to be almost unreadable. This one is unintimidating and outlines the perils as well as the benefits to starting a winery. I'd recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on June 15, 2015
Good overall review of basic winery operation and equipment needed. Some info is questionable, for example, a scenario of "if you run out of grow tubes that will hold up planting grapes"....This is incorrect, you can still plant them and not slow up the operation for the day. Obviously the writer put too much stress on usefulness of grow tubes....as they are not required....or necessarily cost effective....
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on November 22, 2013
This book is well written and full of pertinent information that anyone hoping to start a winery should know. The business end of wine making, regardless how drinkable one's home made wines are, is no walk in the park. It requires substantial capitalization and knowhow. I believe this volume gives a readable and reasoned view of the issues associated with business of making a profit from making wine.
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