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Washington Wines and Wineries: The Essential Guide Hardcover – October 19, 2007


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 328 pages
  • Publisher: University of California Press; 1 edition (October 19, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0520248694
  • ISBN-13: 978-0520248694
  • Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 7.1 x 10.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,398,413 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"A superb book. . . . For those wishing to explore Washington wines in greater depth."--The Wine Advocate

From the Inside Flap

"Unquestionably the most comprehensive book on the topic, Washington Wines and Wineries is a new benchmark in learning about this exciting wine region."--Evan Goldstein, author of Perfect Pairings

"I never miss a chance for lunch or a tasting with Paul Gregutt. He is an eclectic student of wine and an astute taster who never takes himself too seriously. But his Washington Wines & Wineries is a serious publication. The number of Washington wineries has exploded since the turn of the millennium. There are several important new AVAs. Many wonderful wines are being made. So there was an urgent need for this splendid new guide, written with passion and authority. No one who loves Washington wines--in fact, no one serious about wine--should fail to get a copy."--Oz Clarke

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Customer Reviews

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See all 18 customer reviews
Whether you are a newcomer to Washington wine or a connoisseur, this book is a must read.
Shannon Jones
This book is very thorough in its discussion of the history, appellations, grape varieties, top vineyards and top wineries of Washington State.
C. David Larsen
The read is far from textbook as I enjoyed Paul's sense of humor and honesty throughout the book.
Catie McIntyre Walker

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Thomas R. Koenig on November 9, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Paul Gregutt does an exceptional job of exploring Washington wine history and all that it entails. It not only validates many things that I knew from my own observations, it is also very educational. I learned much from his book and I will refer to it frequently in the future. I especially liked the rating process Paul developed for the wineries explored in the book. It made sense to me once I got past the idea that being below 90 on a 1 to 100 point scale can still be exceptional. This is a must read for anyone interested in Washington wines.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Photocelt on November 29, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I thought I knew a lot about Washington wine before I read Paul Gregutt's book. No, HE knows a lot about Washington wine and I have just been schooled. I picked the book up at OS winery in the SSAW district in Seattle and could not put it down until I finished it. The book is divided into three sections: The history of Washington wine including both wine makers, wineries, and the best vineyards; a thorough review of the top 25% of the state's 500+ wineries, subdivided into three sections based on the length of time the wineries have been contributing consistently to the Washington wine industry; and a section on "foreign" imported winemakers who have been wise enough to relocate to Washington as well as what the most influential players in the Washington wine scene see for the future of the state. Gregutt uses his own rating system of 100 points that is completely different from the standards of RP, WA or WS, and I feel more accurate. He mentions literally dozens of bottles to seek out, which I have (at least a few) in the short time since reading the last page; I am not disappointed. This leads me to the conclusion that this book will serve as my guide for wine purchases going forward. Washington wine, although relatively young as an industry, consistently engages my palette with intriguing flavors that tread the line between California fruit forward and French earthy wines, thus creating its own world-class style. Gregutt explains why this is and gives a solid foundation for understanding terroir and the various AVAs in Washington State. Washington wine rightly deserves the accolades it gets, but also confounds as to why it is not more famous globally. Gregutt addresses this conundrum. Lastly, Gregutt's writing style is lively and entertaining and his abilities as the state's premier wine writer are fully on display when he gives notes on all of the state's great wines. My prediction is that time will prove this book to be the most important ever written on Washington wine.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By C. David Larsen on October 28, 2007
Format: Hardcover
No wine writer knows more about Washington wines than Paul Gregutt.
This book is very thorough in its discussion of the history, appellations, grape varieties, top vineyards and top wineries of Washington State. He makes a persuasive case for why Washington wines are world-class.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mike Garrison on February 2, 2008
Format: Hardcover
As Gregutt himself says, fifteen years ago a book like this might have covered every winery in the state and maybe also all of the vineyards. Today he can write this book focusing on only the top 25% most significant wineries and vineyards and it's still a lot of information to take in.

Washington is one of the most exciting wine areas in the world. The growth in output is spectacular, but even more spectacular is the growth in international reputation. Gregutt tries to take the reader behind the scenes and into the history of wine in Washington.

At the same time, he explains that everything he is writing about is still in flux. Even the oldest vineyards are usually still run by the person who planted the first vines, and Washington is still searching for exactly what its real specialties are going to be.

It would be interesting to revisit this book in 20, 50, or 200 years and see what has become of Washington wines by that time.

This is not a boring list of "90-point" wines, or really even a guide to individual wines or wineries at all. Instead it is about the wine industry and wine scene in the state.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Catie McIntyre Walker on November 29, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Let Paul Gregutt be your guide through the nation's second largest wine producer - Washington State. If you're a certified cork-dork or a newbie, this is a must read. Paul explores Washington's wine history to the finished product. The read is far from textbook as I enjoyed Paul's sense of humor and honesty throughout the book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Shannon Jones on February 7, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Paul Gregutt truly understands Washington wine, and it is very well demonstrated in his book (Washington Wines and Wineries). Paul does a terrific job covering the history of the Washington wine industry and many of the top vineyards. The most intriguing part of the book has to be the way Paul provides detailed information on the "Top 25%" of the states wineries. Since many of the top Washington wines are produced in limited quanity by very young wineries, this book provides a much needed resource to help navigate through the current releases. Whether you are a newcomer to Washington wine or a connoisseur, this book is a must read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Philip S. Griffey on April 7, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Paul Gregutt has written about wines in Washington for over 20 years. He covers just about everything you would want to know about wines and wineries in Washington.

His first chapter is a brief (13 pages) history of the wine industry in Washington. He then discusses Washington's eight AVA's (American Viticultural Areas) in considerable detail (21 pages with 6 color maps). This is followed by a comprehensive discussion of the 15 white wine grapes and the 20 red wine grapes found in Washington - and includes which wineries he thinks do the best with each grape (31 pages). He discusses the best ten vineyards (as opposed to wineries) in the state (28 pages).

This is followed by an extensive discussion of 120 different wineries, broken down into four categories: 1. The best (14 wineries in 32 pages), 2. Specialists - 30 wineries which are particularly focused on one or two wines, where they are particularly reliable (40 pages), 3. The third group mentioned is 30 wineries which show potential for excellence in one or more wines and have released at least five vintages (27 pages), 4. The fourth group (46 wineries) is similar to the third, but have released fewer than five vintages(30 pages). These discussions include a short history of the winery, the owners, wine-makers, and other important people. It discusses their philosophy and goals, their principle wines, experiments, and side lines, their production, their plans, and their contributions to the wine industry.

The only drawback to this book is the "new age" tasting notes, which ascribe very improbable flavors to the wines tasted. (e.g., "[The Walla Walla bottling of Seven Hills Syrah] sports an invigorating, lifted nose that combines lemon and lime and orange peel with raspberry syrup and mocha.
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