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on November 19, 2010
Zraly is the master of wine education for energetically bringing to light, simplifying and making deliciously understandable even the most complex aspects of winedom. So I was at first unsure why he created this anthology of other people's words on the subject. What I found was the holy grail and foundation material that has been the basis for wine educators, wine writers and winemakers now and for the past 40 years. Debunking wine myths with facts and studies, enhancing traditions with rich readable reasoning, this succinct body of works is one of the great reference books of our time.
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on November 27, 2010
In the wine book genre we have so many serious and ponderous books, so much reference and finely organized information on grape varieties, regions, vintages etc., it just becomes exhausting at times. Do publishers not realize that some times we just want to read about wine for pleasure?

The irony is that most wine writers have written some very pleasureable pieces, but it takes an insightful, well read colleague like Kevin Zraly to gather together all these delightful tidbits. Working in the tradition of the great wine writers whom mentored Kevin, he was able to emulate the classic wine pleasure book, THE FIRESIDE BOOK OF WINE by our mutual friend, Alex Bespaloff< RIP. He gathered the best from the best, with his great personal presence in the wine biz, and the universal love and respect he enjoys from his colleagues, Kevin is perhaps the only living author who could assemble this delicious assortment of wine literary candy.
Worth twice the price and with Amazon selling for half the price it is worth 10 times what you will pay for this book!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon March 31, 2011
`The Ultimate Wine Companion' is a handsome book with sturdy cream coloured pages. It gives you readings about wine and an education. There are many excerpts by wine authorities, something is written about each one as their excerpt begins. There are tales of excess...spending $25,000 for a week of wine tasting and food and the real story of California wining the wine tasting in France.

Sections include thoughts on wine, tasting wine, wine and food, making wine and the different regions of the old world and the new world. There is a history of each area, information how the wine is produced and what the finished product is like. Examples of labels are shown, information about the vineyards and vintages.
The appendices give classifications, best vintages, a glossary with pronunciations, the contributor biographies and an index.
This would give anyone the information they need to become an oenologist, or enough information to be someone who knows what to expect and look for when they purchase wine.
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on August 2, 2011
This book takes knowledge from a variety of well respected profesionals and provides a coherent perspective into the wine world (snobs and all). Its an all together good read for knowledge or just an easy read to sit on the deck and enjoy a glass of your favorite wine. Speckled with humor and scientific knowledge, it is sure to keep your attention.
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on March 24, 2014
My husband was given this book and absolutely loved all the information on the differences in the wines, their process of making, their origins, etc. He bought one for one of our sons-in-law and he loves his, too! Great book for the person who truly desires to know about the different wines and all that goes into processing them. Also tells you which wines you may want to serve with different food groups or dinner recipes.
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on March 7, 2014
"Ultimate???" no -- not even close. On a cruise two years ago, we were dining with our Italian Captain. He by-passed the paired wines of the evening and opted for his favorite white: a Vermentino from Tuscany, even tho' most come from Sicily. This book doesn't even list it in the index. I could cite other deficiencies, but, I think you get the point. A decent book about "buyer beware" and therefore not a zero or one star - so it's good to have if you have many books on wine.

Complete? Hardly.
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on March 10, 2013
Zraly has a way with words, but this is a completation of works by other folks - some insightful but a niche book. My major critisism
is the lask of proper referencing of sources.
Clearly dates should be included- the wine world continues to evolve.
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on July 2, 2013
This book contains Zraly's selection of articles published by famous wine commentators. Obviously the serious experts read tons of articles like these, but Zraly gives us a good selection of shopping advice and interesting tidbits of wine lore.

Those who were hoping to find one book to make them an expert may be disappointed that this book cannot be all things to all people. The rest of us can begin to develop an idea of the truly massive amount of specialized knowledge humans have accumulated about wines over the centuries.

Zraly's book was interesting and informative, and helped me understand that no one really masters the subject of wines. For those new to the topic of wines, this book is a great companion. Others genuinely interested in wines will find the selections enjoyable. If you really want to master the topic of wines, Zraly's bibliography will set you on your way. Enjoy!
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on April 26, 2014
solid condition. looks great in tremendous condition with out any flaws. will recommend to any and all who are curious
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on April 22, 2016
Bought as a gift - recipient loved it!
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