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The Home Winemaker's Companion: Secrets, Recipes, and Know-How for Making 115 Great-Tasting Wines Paperback – July 1, 2000

56 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Few pleasures are more gratifying than pouring a glass of fine wine, admiring its clarity and color, savoring its rich bouquet, raising it to your lips, and knowing that you made it yourself. With this complete guide to home winemaking, such pleasures can be yours with little fuss and lots of fun. The Home Winemaker's Companion will guide you as you progress from making your very first batch of kit wine to mastering advanced techniques for making wine from fresh grapes. Included are Gene Spaziani's tried-and-true recipes for 115 delectable wines -- even port and champagne!

Making consistently great wine at home is easy; the hardest part is being patient while your wine ages!

About the Author

Author Ed Halloran is a freelance writer, a radio and television commentator, and a college marketing professor.


Author Gene Spaziani has been a home winemaker for over 40 years. He shares his knowledge by teaching wine courses in New Haven and Bridgeport, Connecticut. He is a charter member of the Society of Wine Educators, president of Amenti del Vino-The Wine Society, and a past president of the American Wine Society. Together with Ed Halloran, Gene has co-written the Storey book, The Home Winemaker's Companion. Their book is a complete guide for the beginning or advanced winemaker, with instructions for using concentrates, kits, juices, fruits and herbs to create a wide variety of homemade wines. In addition, Gene is a writer for New England Wine Gazette, WineMaker Magazine, and the American Wine Society Journal. At the sixth annual Connecticut Amateur Home Winemakers Competition, Gene took home the show's highest award. He won Best of Show for his 1996 Cabernet Franc, as well as gold, silver, and bronze medals for other entries. He has also won gold medals for his entries in the American Wine Society Amateur Competition, the Indiana State Fair Amateur Wine Competition, the Connecticut Amateur Wine Competition, and the Pittsburgh Amateur Wine Competition.

Gene lives in Connecticut with his wife, Isabel. He has four children and five grandchildren.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Storey Publishing, LLC (July 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580172091
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580172097
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.7 x 8.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #68,097 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

56 of 56 people found the following review helpful By Mark and Tess Szamatulski on January 8, 2001
Format: Paperback
We are the owners of Maltose Express, the largest winemaking and homebrew store in Connecticut. Whenever a winemaker is looking for a winemaking book, whether the customer is a novice or an experienced winemaker, this book is the one we sell them. It is written by a home-winemaker who knows his craft; after all, he has been making award-winning wine for over 40 years. Not only is Mr. Spaziani a past president ot the American Wine Society and teaches college classes on winemaking and appreciation, but he is also ranked as one of the top ten national home wine-makers ever! This is one author of a winemaking book that doesn't just sit in front of a computer and write. He makes alot of wine and has the purple hands in September and October to prove it! Follow his advice, methods and use his expertise to make your own luscious and award winning wines. Buy this book, your next wine might be a gold medal winner!
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47 of 49 people found the following review helpful By Jack B. Keller, Jr. on June 11, 2001
Format: Paperback
Gene Spaziani and Ed Halloran have written a book that needed to be written. The first three chapters are the obligatory "how to make wine" chapters ("Getting Started," "Essential How-Tos" and "Wine from Kits"). These have been done better by others, but the book would be incomplete without them.
The meat of this book begins with chapter 4, "Wine from Concentrates." And what a chapter it is, covering 13 specific white wine concentrates (Chenin Blanc to Vino Blanc) and 13 specific red wine concentrates (Barbera to Zinfandel), with recipes and step-by-step instructions for each (all suspiciously similar, but if the shoe fits....).
Chapter 5 is "Wine from Juices," and it does a superb job with 15 white grape juices (Chardonnay to Vidal Blanc), 15 red grape juices (Barbera to Zinfandel again, but many in between are different) and one blush.
Chapter 6, "White Wine from Grapes," covers 20 great grapes, from Aurora French-American Hybrid to Vidal Blanc French-American Hybrid, with some real classics in between. Chapter 7 is predictably "Red Wine from Grapes," covering another 20 grapes from Alicante-Bouschet to--again--Zinfandel, but the in-betweens are both classic and unusual.
Chapter 8, "Wine from Fruit," offers up 14 classic non-grape wines--from Apple to Strawberry. I found some of the ingredients thought-provoking(Epsom salts, for example, in fresh-crushed apple juice), but I found their choices of yeast less than inspiring (their heavy reliance on sweet mead yeast was a bit unimaginative, in my opinion).
Chapter 9, "Sparkling and Fortified Wines," offers a very good primer on these subjects, with more emphasis on the latter than the former.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 28, 2000
Format: Paperback
I am a newer wine maker and as such, I found this book to be just what I needed to help get the job done! Other books I own were much more difficult to follow or they went off on some tangent or were incomplete. The Home Winemaker's Companion achieves exactly what is needed to help anyone make good drinkable wine and have fun. Thank You!
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 17, 2000
Format: Paperback
I have been making wine for over 20 years, and can attest that the book will provide all of the information needed to make the adventure of winemaking a success.The chapter on "Essential How-Tos" and "Troubleshooting" will be enormously helpful to any serious homewinemaker. A great addition to any library.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By C. Fields on July 25, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book could be reduced to one half or one third pages. The '115 great tasting' wines part of this book is essentially a repetition of the same basic formula over and over with only a few wines with some variation from one to the next. Basic operations are described, but I was hoping for a bit more of fine pointers. It is a good starter basic book. But save a few trees and streamline at the risk of looking like there is no content, or add some.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Paul Charlesworth on December 26, 2006
Format: Paperback
This is a book from my Christmas List and is great if you want recipes on how to convert all your grapes in to wine. However, if you are looking for a book that provides you with technical information about wine making, and a substantial number of country wines, you may need to look elsewhere. It was hard to review because although it has a great selection of grape recipes, it lacks the detail I was looking for on how to make wine, and develop wine recipes from scratch, unless I missed it.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By armand brandi on December 22, 2000
Format: Paperback
I have recently purchased this wine making book. It contains many receipies for many diferent types and styles of wines. I have found it to be very helpful in my efforts to making good sound wines.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 13, 2000
Format: Paperback
The book is easy to read, in a user-friendly format. The book is written more as a recipe book than the chemical- experiment type of winemaking books. The fear of making wine is addressed early on in the book, and the short recipes are very interesting. For example, there are "recipes" (rather than formulas) for tomato and other fruit wines. And, as the author mentions, if you try to make beer you could make yourself or someone else ill, but if you try your hand at making wine and you fail, you have a designer vinegar.
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