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8 Reviews
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Normally I dislike Hugh Johnson's work
However, I must say that I did enjoy this book. While one reviewer here didn't seem to be too interested in the history of wine, I found it very interesting, so interesting in fact that I am giving my paperback version to a friend and purchasing the hardback version for myself.
What I enjoy about the historical approach is that it helps me understand just how...
Published on August 23, 1999

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6 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Lots of historic information, tedious presentation
It's a history book! If you love Hugh Johnson and love history, you'll love this. Well I love WINE and really like Hugh Johnson and I can't seem to finish this book!
Published on February 20, 1999


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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Normally I dislike Hugh Johnson's work, August 23, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Hugh Johnson's Story of Wine (Hardcover)
However, I must say that I did enjoy this book. While one reviewer here didn't seem to be too interested in the history of wine, I found it very interesting, so interesting in fact that I am giving my paperback version to a friend and purchasing the hardback version for myself.
What I enjoy about the historical approach is that it helps me understand just how modern wine styles evolved. For example, seeing the influence of the Napoleanic wars on British purchasing and subsequent development of new wines (like Port) was interesting.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vintage Writing, December 27, 2002
This review is from: Hugh Johnson's Story of Wine (Hardcover)
This is one of the most comprehensive and certainly one of the most enjoyable books on wine in any language. Combining excellent prose with impressive scholarship, Mr. Johnson offers a scintillating and often enlightening history of the world's best beverage. Strongly recommended for the historian or wine enthusiast.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most delicious wine book, August 26, 2006
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Hugh Johnson's marvelous book in a partial answer to a question that few of us have had the sense to ask. While many of us will spend valuable hours wondering: `which wine?' we rarely ask `why wine?'

What's the big deal? Why so many books, why such intense feeling? Wine is just the fermented juice of grapes. Yes, and music is just organized noise and sex is merely one of the ways in which organisms ensure perpetuation of their type.

The reason for the passion isn't to be found in alcohol alone. Almost any sugary solution will support fermentation, and it seems that just about every possible sweet liquid has been fermented from time to time. An amateur winemakers' guide in my library lists recipes for the production of wines from almonds, apples, bananas, barley, beetroot, birch sap, cloves, clover, eggplant, guava, lemons, oak leaves, orange juice, parsley, parsnips, peapods, squash, tea, tomatoes, wallflowers, yarrow and yes, to complete the alphabet, zinnias.

These 'wines'are all possible, but none of them exist. In fact, we restrict our winemaking to just a few varieties of grape. Why?
Aside from the many economic advantages, the fermented juice of grapes is delicious. At its most common, it's a fresh and fruity drink that quenches the thirst and gladdens the heart. At its most exalted, the basic flavors of the grape are transformed by fermentation and aging into a symphony of aromas and tastes and lingering associations. Both the bountiful nature of grape vines and the enormous appeal of their fermented fruit's juice has led civilized man to attach a lot of meaning to wine.

Johnson's book, a slimmed down version of the earlier Vintage , not only reminds us that the question of wine's importance needs to be asked, it goes a long way to providing an answer. His range of reference is impressive and his writing-witting and incisive-is impeccable. When you're ready to try to understand how wine attained its place in the modern world, there's no better place to start than this book.

Lynn Hoffman, author of The New Short Course in Wine
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars great!, April 30, 2008
a comprehensive guide to the history of wine. grape wine that is, they don't go much into sake or wines made from other products, though some are mentioned. it goes through many countries and time periods and was overall very readable for a history text.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Book, February 17, 2013
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If your interested in all aspects of wine it is an amazing story. The Bible for the wine true lover.
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5.0 out of 5 stars As good as a glass of wine, October 21, 2011
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Many people consider "useless culture" to have knowledge about certain issues. Many would claim: "Why do I have to know about wine?". The answer is very simple, indeed. Wine is part of the culture of a people and more than being a drink it is a form of art.

Considering the wine a form of useful knowledge and a form of art, "The sorty of wine" is a masterpiece on the subject. It is also written in such a way you may feel you are part of the trips Mr. Johnson did in order to come up with this brilliant work. A book for the lovers of this beverage that is more than something to drink, it is a pleasure for the soul.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A treasure, July 16, 2011
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I checked this book out from the library looking for a wine coffee table book for my mother before buying her this. Well written and beautifully illustrated, she loves it!
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6 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Lots of historic information, tedious presentation, February 20, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Hugh Johnson's Story of Wine (Hardcover)
It's a history book! If you love Hugh Johnson and love history, you'll love this. Well I love WINE and really like Hugh Johnson and I can't seem to finish this book!
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Hugh Johnson's Story of Wine
Hugh Johnson's Story of Wine by Hugh Johnson (Hardcover - January 9, 1998)
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