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Love by the Glass: Tasting Notes from a Marriage Paperback – January 14, 2003


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 316 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks (January 14, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812966864
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812966862
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.1 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #843,449 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Dorothy J. Gaiter and her husband John Brecher are best known for their Wall Street Journal wine column, "Tastings," a passionate yet practical guide to their favorite subject. Love by the Glass: Tasting Notes from a Marriage is their marriage-and-wine memoir, an account of the couple's life together in terms of the bottles they discovered, shared, and enjoyed (or didn't) over time. If readers learn less than they should about the pair when their glasses aren't raised, they are nonetheless treated to a fascinating (as well as useful) investigation of a growing education and the bottles that fueled it.

Chapters are named for the couples' progressive wine discoveries, from the "rudimentary" (André Cold Duck, enjoyed on their first date) to the diversely more evolved (for example, a "magnificent" Gevrey-Chambertin Gérard Quivy provided in a basement shop in Burgundy). Other discoveries are delightfully serendipitous (like a "small" but delicious Collery brut champagne, enjoyed at the launch of the pair's wine Web site). In the process, readers follow the intertwining lives of the love-at-first-sight couple--he, from one of a few Jewish families in Jacksonville, Florida; she, African American and raised in the environment of Florida A&M University--as they blend burgeoning journalism careers with their love of wine. Emblematic of this ever-evolving infatuation, and a narrative high point, is the couple's maternity ward visit to wet the lips of their newborn second daughter with Taittinger champagne. Thus wine and love are once again mutually measured in a book all devotees of the grape, and of the couple who so plainly elucidate its mysteries, will want to read. --Arthur Boehm --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Authors of the Wall Street Journal's "Tastings" column about wine, husband and wife John Brecher and Dorothy J. Gaiter have also teamed up to write their memoir, Love by the Glass: Tasting Notes from a Marriage. Gaiter, who's black, and Brecher who's white, grew up in segregated Florida towns and met at the Miami Herald. With warmth and humor, they recall their courtship and wedding, the arrival of children and their long careers as journalists. All the important life passages, from a new job at Newsweek to the birth of their daughter, are marked by memorable bottles, and the couple describes how they went from enthusiasts to collectors to critics.

Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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A truly heart-warming story.
Janice Sims
I just finished reading LOVE BY THE GLASS.
Barbara Nowak
The book is an absolute delight to read.
H. Rendleman

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Laura Wolff on January 15, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Dottie and John, as readers of their column in the Wall Street Journal inevitably call them, have written a book that's about life and love that sometimes made me laugh so hard that my 10-year-old wanted me to read whatever it was outloud. And sometimes, what was happening to them hurt and I felt pain not just for them, but for anyone who could be in that situation, whether it was struggling with infertility or dealing with the losses of Sept. 11th. Wine is usually something that people think of in terms of exclusivity. Only "some" people can know enough or afford enough or truly appreciate it. Their gift is their ability to bring a sense of the universal to things that often separate us. They build bridges between people, which they seem to have done quite naturally in their relationship. Race, religion don't seem to inevitably separate people in the story of their life. Instead, it's just like different vintages and varieties, to be sampled, celebrated and enjoyed for their own intrinsic merit.
I was a non-wine drinker when I started reading their column in the Wall Street Journal. Now as my bottles collect along with some cherished memories, I feel like they've introduced me to new life adventures that are available to anyone--this book, even while it looks back, is a great continuation of that journey.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Douglas E. Welch on March 29, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Just finished this excellent memoir by the authors of The Wall Street Journal's 'Tastings' column.
While the authors do talk about wine a lot, it is truly a story of their lives and relationship long before they began writing about wine for a living.
An excellent and quick read. Gaiter and Brecher are a wonderful couple, if a bit "precious" at times. I have seen them on [a television program] on occasion and was charmed by their love for wine and their desire to make it understandable to all. Wine is truly an obsession for them, but we can all learn from their obsession without taking it to that level.
I highly recommend reading their "Tastings" column in the Wall Street Journal each Friday. It contains more information on particular wines and recommendations.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Barbara Nowak on January 21, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I just finished reading LOVE BY THE GLASS. It's one of the best books I've ever read -- not one of the best wine books, not one of the best autobiographies -- just one of the best books. The stories (about Dottie and John and about famous and not-so-famous winemakers) are endearing and poignant and drove me to deplete the better part of a box of kleenex. It simultaneously took me back to my own wine roots in the 70's (Mateus, Gallo Hearty Burgundy) and gave me a history of wine in America. More than anything else, LOVE BY THE GLASS is a sweet and compelling story told through wine of two people you'd like to have as friends.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 21, 2003
Format: Paperback
There's plenty to dislike about this book.
First is the style: it's written in the third person, as if by some distant friend of the authors, and that's a highly debatable choice for two people who are zealous advocates for wine being best experienced as an intimate personal event. Then, apparently in recognition of the fact that the 3rd person style has its limitations in this context, the authors throw in occasional personal asides in italics, adding an element of inconsistency on top of their initial poor choice. (A much better style would have been, say, the joint author style used in "All's Fair," the book that James Carville and Mary Matalin did together several years ago). It's thus almost hard to believe that these two are the esteemed writer/journalists that they claim to be...which, in turn, brings up another problem with the book: there's a typical baby boomer self-centered, self-congratulatory note here in a text that doesn't need it. Also in the stylistic department: the end of the book seems awfully rushed. After a leisurely pace through most the book, within the space of a couple pages at the end, the authors breeze through Martha Stewart, the dot-com bust, their decision to give up the traditional careers they started, and 9/11/01.
On top of this, at least some readers are sure to find that the authors really are the wine snobs that they so often claim not to be. They admit, after all, to being Central Park West, East Coast, yuppy liberals who love eating at chi-chi restaurants and living close to the edge of their means while traveling the world. Oh, and for liberals who might be inclined to love the authors all the more because of all this, keep in mind that the authors barely explain their life decision to work for capitalist tool "The Wall St. Journal.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By P Jaeger on September 2, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Peppered with fun anecdotes from nose to finish and delivered in a lean and direct journalistic style, this book will teach the beginner lots about wine, but perhaps a little bit more about John & Dottie's intimate details than we need to know. It is nonetheless a charming, informative, and engaging book, even providing the odd moment of humor, drama, and social comment.
The authors succeed admirably in their main mission, which is to show how passionate they are about wine and encourage readers to find the same passion in themselves. In the process, John & Dottie provide a unique insight into their own career paths from which all young journalists can benefit -- even teetotallers!
The book's only drawback is shared by even the finest wines: taken to excess it can cause headaches and occasionally even mild nauseau. This may be due to the high sugar content in John's musings about Dottie.
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