Wine: A Global History (Edible)
Look. Swirl. Sniff. Taste. Savor. Whether you’re tasting a refreshing white or an aromatic red, these well-known steps are the only proper way to take the first sip of wine. Oenophiles have never been rare, but over the past decade, wine culture has exploded. Amateur wine enthusiasts join dedicated collectors at tastings and on vineyard vacations, and young professionals pack trendy wine bars. Even Hollywood has gotten in on the action—movies like Sideways, Bottle Shock, and French Kiss relate the deep love we have for a glass of pinot noir, a bottle of chardonnay, and the grapes that produce them. But how did wine surpass all other beverages to achieve global domination? In Wine, Marc Millon travels back to the origins of modern man to find the answer, discovering that this heady drink is intertwined with the roots of civilization itself. Wine takes us from Transcaucasia some eight thousand years ago across the Mediterranean Sea, following wine as it spread along with classical civilization throughout Europe, and showing how, thanks to the myths of Dionysus and Bacchus, many of the major wine-producing regions were established in Western Europe. Millon then details how the Spanish conquistadors first brought European grapes to the New World to develop wines for the Catholic mass, and he depicts how wine production traveled to the distant lands of Australia and New Zealand. Today, it is even part of the burgeoning economies of India and China. Millon also explores the types of wine developed in each region, describing the many varieties of grapes and the process of fermentation and storage. Crisp and concise, with a hint of cherry and a soupcon of citrus, Wine provides the perfect introduction for wine novices seeking to impress at their first tasting while offering an engaging chronicle for experts looking to learn more about this most mysterious and magical of beverages.