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Book Reviews


Must Read: The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil

Do you remember the first Wine Bible? When it came out, it revolutionized the way Americans saw wine. Now author Karen MacNeil is back with a new edition, just as fat and packed with must-read info as the original, but better and updated! She includes the top regions of the world, along with a helpful […]


Wines of California: Book Review

Of course, Mike DeSimone and Jeff Jenssen are the coolest guys. In this book the “World Wine Guys” take readers on a fab trip into California winemaking, history, and geography. You will also find some great recipes from local chefs, yet what I liked best of all are Mike’s and Jeff’s fun, easy “voice,” that […]


Book Review: Tom Stevenson’s Buy the Right Wine Every Time

Ok, so we already know that Tom Stevenson is a genius, yes? His Sotheby’s Wine Encyclopedia is the standard reference for the Master of Wine and Master Sommelier examinations worldwide. This distinguished (though cool and low key) gentleman has also won many literary awards. Yet to be honest, carrying around all these reference books on […]


Book Review: Buy the Right Wine Every Time by Tom Stevenson

  Okay, so the sub-title to this book is: The No-Fuss No-Vintage Wine Guide.  It is designed for the consumer who “drinks wine” yet does not “think wine.” The above statement translates into a nicely packaged, informative book that is a guide to the most widely available wines found in restaurants and wine shops globally. […]


eBook Review: The World Atlas of Wine, by Jancis Robinson and Hugh Johnson

Like many of you, I’ve been buying enormous, weighty wine books and atlases with each new edition, as there is always important and exciting information. As soon as the newest version of The World Atlas of Wine by Jancis Robinson and Hugh Johnson came out, I raved about it in a review, as the text […]


Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine Book 2014

How about this for an idea? “If you like Rioja, try Washington State Merlot.”   What! Where did that curveball come from? Actually, it comes from Hugh Johnson’s new updated 2014 Pocket Wine Book, where the first dozen or so pages offer readers intriguing ideas about how to expand their repertoire and frankly, get out […]


New Edition: The World Atlas of Wine!

Wow, I was so excited to receive my new 7th edition of the World Atlas of Wine, written by the famous Jancis Robinson and Hugh Johnson. It is completely revised and updated, with GORGEOUS color pictures and clear maps with large type. In comparison, the design of the older books just looked … old (and […]


Napa Valley Iconic Wineries

It is so interesting that today I received a copy of this gorgeous coffee table size book called Napa Valley Iconic Wineries the very same days that the Guild of Sommeliers offered members a three flight tasting of iconic wines from Napa Valley. This book celebrates iconic Napa winemakers, and has gorgeous photography. Within each […]

Secrets of the Sommelier: Review of “Restaurant Man” by Joe Bastianich

Have you ever wondered what it is like to be the wine director of a restaurant? Of course, in some ways it sounds like a fantasy job. One can imagine the pleasures of having distributors visit your restaurant, bringing you fabulous wine to savor and discuss … Yet of course this is really only a […]


Review of “Discovering the World of Wine”

“What a fabulous resource!” This was my first thought when clicking into the fabulously detailed online course called “Discovering the World of Wine” co-authored by highly credentialed writers/educators Patricia Savoie and Ron Kapon (also Fairleigh Dickinson University’s wine course professor for 16 years) and underwritten by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s school of International hospitality and The […]


Naked Wine (Book Review) …

  Naked Wine by Alice Feiring Reviewed by Marisa D’Vari In this colorful narrative vaguely similar to Kermit Lynch’s Adventures on the Wine Route, Alice Feiring tackles “natural wine,” currently one of the hottest subjects in the wine world. Most people think that like buying the freshest produce in a greenmarket, the more natural the […]


Can Celebrity restaurateur Danny Meyer Live up to the Hype?

      In his new book Setting the Table, Danny Meyer sets himself up as the king of hospitality. In the real world, does he practice what he preaches? Marisa D’Vari finds out … Rather daring, don’t you think, for a restaurateur to write a book titled Setting The Table: The Transforming Power of Hospitality in […]


Wine Book Review: Collio: Fine Wines and Foods from Italy’s North-East

Review of Collio   One of the more indulgent pleasures in today’s frenzied world (especially when it comes to the tiny kitchens of Manhattan) is to buy a glossy cooking magazine with mouth-watering photographs of incredibly decadent cuisine, and just sit there, savoring a glass of wine as you read the recipe and pretend you […]


Book Review: About Wine by J. Patrick Henderson and Dellie Rex

  For whatever reason, I received the book About Wine by J. Patrick Henderson and Dellie Rex over two years ago, yet had been too overwhelmed by my wine studies to open anything that wasn’t Janscis Robinson or Tom Stevenson. It’s only now that I have my diploma from the Wine and Spirits Educational Trust […]

Review: Jennifer Rosen’s book “Waiter, There’s a Horse in My Wine”

Let’s face it, sometimes reading the back of a bottle of wine is simply not enough. We’ve all had the experience of tasting a wine so incredible we want to know everything about it at once: the name of the grapes, the style of wine, and why it tastes so much more incredible than any […]

Book Review: The Cork Jester’s Guide to Wine

Curious to learn everything about wine — and have fun doing so? Your local bookstore’s shelves groan with thick, wordy volumes about wine, but if you really want a fun, readable, quick study of wine basics — and to laugh out loud while reading it — look to Jennifer Rosen’s The Cork Jester’s Guide to […]

Book Review: Red, White, and Drunk All Over

Like most people, I’m sure you think the life of a wine writer is exciting, yes? And romantic. And you are quite right — the life of a professional wine writer is something to be admired. And what are the qualities that make for a professional wine writer, you might ask? Of course, they are […]

Book Review: Penin’s Guide to Spanish Wine

Do you like Spanish wine? If you are like most wine aficionados, the answer is a resounding ‘yes.” Why do so many people around the world prefer Spanish wine? Well, for one thing, in today’s challenging economic climate, Spanish wine…

How to Buy Wine at Auction

The Wine Lover’s Guide to Auctions: The Art & Science of Buying And Selling Wines Book Review by Marisa D’Vari Okay , so you’ve seen the film Sideways and have been trying to learn about wine ever since. You’re questioning…

What to Drink with What You Eat

Are you curious about what wine to order with your cheesecake? Intimidated by five-hundred page wine list at a top restaurant? Downright scared when the sommelier comes charging toward your table? Relax. In the book What to Drink with What…