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Oldman's Brave New World of Wine: Pleasure, Value, and Adventure Beyond Wine's Usual Suspects Paperback – September 6, 2010

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Oldman's Brave New World of Wine: Pleasure, Value, and Adventure Beyond Wine's Usual Suspects + Oldman's Guide to Outsmarting Wine: 108 Ingenious Shortcuts to Navigate the World of Wine with Confidence and Style + The Wine Bible
Price for all three: $49.48

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 333 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; F First Paperback Edition Used edition (September 6, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393334848
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393334845
  • Product Dimensions: 0.7 x 0.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #731,023 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Renowned oenologist, author of Oldman's Guide to Outsmarting Wine, and columnist for Everyday with Rachel Ray magazine, Oldman offers a no-fuss, easy-to-follow yet thorough and informative guide to less popular varietals. While he doesn't cover German Riesling, he does include Rieslings from Australia and from Austria as well as only "good" merlot. For many, this will be their first introduction to Spain's Albariño, Southern Italy's Aglianico, and France's Cahors, as well as numerous others. For each, Oldman provides a handy reference guide that includes the wine's price range, suggestions for similar wines, and label information. He also includes a valuable guide to food and flavor pairings. Throughout, Oldman shares commentary from an insider group he calls the Bravehearts, wine enthusiasts such as industry experts like Andrew Adam and Mannie Berk, noted chefs including Ming Tsai and Alain Ducasse, and famous individuals with a penchant for good wine like Jodie Foster and Hilary Swank. In addition to white, pink, red, bubbly, and dessert wines, he also explores big bottle, box, and aged wine. For those looking to expand their vinous palate, Oldman leads the way.
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“Amazing, hilarious, fascinating…a must for anyone who likes wine.” (Marie Clare)

“Carefully curated…witty and accessible, for enthusiasts of all levels.” (Fine Cooking)

“You will cherish this book...Mark has a clear head, cool eye, and experienced palate.” (Huffington Post)

“Charismatic and cool…full of snappy insights.” (Library Journal)

“A must-peruse for wine lovers of any level…entertaining enough to easily qualify as bedtime reading material.” (Palm Beach Post)

“He’s so vine…an oenophile wizard…whose book is lively and non-snobby.” (Washington Post)

“Any level of wine drinker will come away with useful new information.” (TastingTable.com)

“For those looking to expand their vinous palates, Mark leads the way.” (Publishers Weekly)

“Engaging, humorous…readers will enjoy discovering new wine options.” (Sommelier Journal)

“If you are stuck in a wine rut, reach for this—it's just plain fun.  Packed with suggestions ...easy to explore...unpretentious and informative...a great gift.” (Charlotte Observer)

“A welcome discussion of many little-known wines that have a great deal of pleasure to offer.” (The New York Times)

“The perfect book for someone who’s just caught the bug, or would like to...breezy, literate prose...Oldman knows his stuff.” (Jay McInerney - The Wall Street Journal)

“A great gift for beginners and especially for anyone in a malbec or chardonnay rut, thanks to Oldman's clear writing, understanding of context, and great palate.” (Minneapolis Star-Tribune)

“Already my dog-eared restaurant companion, this book [is changing my view of wine] the way the Great Beer Guide changed my appreciation of the noble grain.” (Austin American-Statesman)

“Oldman nails it again…unique and valuable...warm, down-to-earth and accessible…it lives up to its promise.” (Good Grape: A Wine Blog Manifesto)

“I want to highly recommend [the book]...Oldman is one hell of a good writer.” (Steve Heimoff, author of New Classic Winemakers of California)

“The book will vastly increase your hedonistic happiness...Mark should be your best friend in wine.” (Natalie MacLean, author of Red, White, and Drunk All Over)

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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His books are full of very clear information.
Linda Foxworth
That book, Oldman's Guide to Outsmarting Wine, is THE benchmark book for a wine introduction and a book I've recommended to friends over and over again.
J. Lefevere
It's also a great reference book for planning parties/pairings and makes for a wonderful host/hostess gift right in time for the holidays!

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The last time I saw Mark Oldman was at a wine tasting he hosted. He was wearing a blazer with wide red piping on the cuffs and lapels --- if he'd had a whip, he would have made a great lion tamer. Overkill? For Oldman, par for the course.

Mark Oldman is not like other wine experts. He may be 40 now, but he's eternally young --- and he has the best qualities of youth. He's a rule breaker: "Anything you can't pronounce is a good value." A truth teller: "Only 29% of the wines on sale will get better with age." An attention-getter: He drives "one of 500 `Grabber Orange,' 400-horsepower street-legal racecars made by Saleen, a boutique manufacturer-modifier of high-performance Mustangs."

Above all, Mark Oldman --- who was, once upon a time, a Serious Person, picking up a Phi Beta Kappa Key from Stanford, where he earned a B.A. and M.A. in English and a J.D. from Stanford Law School --- is a showman. Just watch him talk about rosé. It's the color of "a socialite's purse" or "Donald Trump's hairline." But note how, after he grabs your attention, he imparts knowledge and enthusiasm in equal parts, leaving you extremely eager to crack upon a bottle.

When last we met Mark Oldman in print, we were reading his immodestly titled Oldman's Guide to Outsmarting Wine. It was a smart, practical book with international flair --- in these pages, the Stanford grad leaves Napa far behind. I wasn't surprised that it was named Georges Duboeuf Wine Book of the Year. Or that it led to appearances at food festivals and wine seminars.

Now he's back. This time, he assumes you have some knowledge of wine --- what? you didn't read his first book? --- and are now ready to venture into unknown territory: wines that don't come from California or France.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By J. Lefevere on September 21, 2010
Format: Paperback
Just when you think every possible nook and cranny of the wine 101 book category has been explored, out comes a book that takes a unique and valuable spin on the beginner to intermediate wine genre.

Oldman's Brave New World of Wine is an evolution of sorts from Mark Oldman's first title published in 2004. That book, Oldman's Guide to Outsmarting Wine, is THE benchmark book for a wine introduction and a book I've recommended to friends over and over again. This time around, Oldman, a judge on the wine TV reality show The Winemakers, focuses on 46 under-appreciated varietals and puts his trademark accessibility spin on the varietals, hoping to expose the quirky to a wider audience.

The premise of the book originated at professional tastings that Oldman attended where fellow wine insiders would get excitable and passionate about an off-the-beaten path varietal. Taking this cue, Oldman's book is focused on bringing these niche wines to larger awareness.

From the introduction:

"... Now you can trot the globe from the comfort of your own dinner table, sampling a new region or grape every night of the
month if you so desire. The diversity of wines and their quality and affordability has never been greater ... so my mandate crystallized: it was time to build a bridge of knowledge from the insiders to everyone else, revealing wines that so electrify me and my fellow wine pros - opening the curtain on what I call the `Brave New Pours' ...

For beginners and the experienced alike, "Brave New Pours" ... provides escape hatches for enthusiasts caught in a Stockholm-Syndrome-like dependence on mainstream wine types."

Mostly, Oldman nails it again.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Wesley Cronk on September 11, 2010
Format: Paperback
Oldman approaches the otherwise intimidating level of material covered in 'Brave New World' with a very relatable, entertaining touch of personality. Versed in the intricacies of up-and-coming, lesser-known gems, Oldman delivers his perspective with anecdotes and explanations that are enjoyable for wine fans of any expertise.

Stylistically, the book is structured in a way that allows one to read the prose as an entertaining narrative and also use it as a quick reference guide when choosing new wines to explore. I particularly appreciated the fact sheets included in every section. Concise and easy to read, they are particularly helpful for the cost-conscious connoisseur who wants an idea of what they can expect when making sizable purchases.

This book is a great selection for anyone interested in learning more about the modern wine landscape. Oldman is enlightening in this text, making the reader feel as if they are conversing with a passionate enthusiast while they learn about this fascinating field.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Eric on September 7, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Perfect for anyone interested in learning about wine. Two things set it apart from other wine books: 1) The writing style is very lively, funny and easy to read, rather than stuffy or overly scientific like you might find in other wine books. 2) Oldman is a great teacher and naturally makes the material accessible to novices, like me. I only drink wine casually at restaurants and at home, but I have a greater appreciation of it based on what I learned in Oldman's books. I give this book an A+, really a must-have for anyone who likes drinking wine.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews

More About the Author

Passionate about helping wine enthusiasts jostle the jaded, slay the snooty, and drink bravely, Mark Oldman (@MarkOldman) is one of the country's leading wine personalities. He is the wine expert for Pottery Barn and wine columnist for the Food Network. His signature style was best summed up by Bon Appètit magazine as "winespeak without the geek" and by Publishers Weekly as "the ideal mix of wine connoisseur, showman, and everyday dude." He has twice won the Georges Duboeuf Best Wine Book of the Year Award.

Mark's latest book, Oldman's Brave New World of Wine (W. W. Norton), is the ultimate antidote for those craving new taste sensations. It plots a course to pleasure, value, and adventure beyond wine's usual suspects, focusing on that holy grail of wine lovers: insider wines of moderate cost and maximum appeal. The Wall Street Journal recently called Oldman's Brave New World of Wine "the perfect book for someone who's just caught the bug, or would like to." Winner of the 2011 Duboeuf Best Wine Book of the Year Award, it was named one of the "Best of Books of the Year" (Apple iTunes), "amazing, hilarious" (Marie Clare), "charismatic and cool" (Publishers Weekly), "wicked funny" (Palm Beach Post), "a welcome discussion of many little-known wines that have a great deal of pleasure to offer" (New York Times), a resource that "lives up to its promise" (GoodGrape.com), "for enthusiasts of all levels" (Fine Cooking), "hedonistic happiness" (wine personality Natalie MacLean), and "a book you will cherish" (Huffington Post).

Mark's last book, the best-selling Oldman's Guide to Outsmarting Wine (Penguin), was called "perfect" (Wine Enthusiast), "shortcuts to a connoisseur's confidence" (BusinessWeek), and "the perfect primer--concise, evenhanded, fun, and practical" (The New Yorker). Currently in its ninth printing, it won the 2005 Duboeuf Best Wine Book of the Year Award, was a finalist for "Best Wine Book" at the World Food Media Awards, and is published in Japan, Belgium, and in four volumes in France.

Mark is a lead judge in the PBS television series "The Winemakers" and is in the middle of filming the show's next season in France's Rhone Valley. He is also a regular on Martha Stewart Radio's "Living Today" program on Sirius Satellite Radio.

Mark has written for several top publications, including Food & Wine, Departures, and Travel & Leisure, and he has chosen all of the wine picks for the 15-million annual readers of Everyday with Rachael Ray magazine. He regularly speaks to sold-out audiences at the country's top gastronomic festivals, including the Aspen Food & Wine Classic, the Boston Wine Expo, and the Food Network Wine & Food Festivals in New York and South Beach. In 2011 he is also appearing at a host of other leading venues, among them the James Beard House, the 92nd Street Y, the American Heart Association "Heart's Delight" Auction in Washington, D.C., Pebble Beach Food & Wine, the New York Wine Expo, Oregon's International Pinot Noir Celebration, and many other appearances.

Mark began his wine journey in 1990 when as a student he founded Stanford Wine Circle, a popular university club hosting tastings with California wine legends, earning him the nickname "Bacchus on the Campus" in Wine Spectator magazine. Graduating Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University with a B.A., M.A., and J.D., Mark has long been keenly interested in innovating in the areas of education and consumer advocacy. Mark co-founded the career portal Vault.com in 1997 and served as the company's president through its successful sale in 2007 to a private equity firm. He has served on four major boards of Stanford, including the university's Board of Trustees.

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