"I can no more think of my own life without thinking of wine and wines and where they grew for me and why I drank them when I did and why I picked the grapes and where I opened the oldest procurable bottles, and all that, than I can remember living before I breathed."
With this remarkable sentence, M.F.K. Fisher opens this abundant book, in which forty-four of the most knowledgeable winemakers and wine authorities explore the achievement of California wine from the Mission days to the present. Fisher's reminiscence on the honest wines she has enjoyed over seven decades is followed by an astute essay by the noted wine critic Hugh Johnson showing how the new style of California winemaking has changed the world's way of thinking about California wine--and California's way of thinking about itself. In other original essays eight winemakers, several historians and wine critics, a gifted cook, a doctor, a plant geneticist, corkscrew and label collectors, and a score of other experts discuss the many dimensions of California wine, give guidance on tasting, and evaluate the wine and wineries.
This lavishly produced volume was set on a Mergenthaler Linotron 202, using a Mergenthaler digital adaptation of Plantin. The jacket and endpapers were printed by Max Strassman, Mastercraft Press, San Francisco, on Thistle Multicolor, a paper manufactured for and distributed by Process Materials Corporation, Rutherford, New Jersey. The book was printed and bound by Kingsport Press, and Arcata Graphics Company, Kingsport, Tennesee. Printing was by offset lithography on a six-color web-fed press. Text paper stock, milled for this book, is Penn Text Laid, 70 pound weight, manufactured by the Penn Tech Mill, Johnsonburg. The book is bound in Buntgewebe 300 binding cloth, made by Vereinigte Goppinger Bamberger Kaliko GmbH of Bamberg, Germany. Book design is by Ernest Born, who drew the large roman numbers in chapter headings and several items of ornamental and geometric character that are found scattered throughout the volume, sometimes in association with incidental illustrations and supportive technical captions.