The author actually quotes the line of Persian poetry I've used as my review title in his book. Nonetheless, he seeks the origins of wine.
Inspired by a wine made in Bethlehem from ancient varietals that he tasted while pursuing a story (he's a journalist), he returns years later seeking the origin of wine in the holy land. As he talks to experts he learns that the holy land is not likely to be the birthplace of wine. He finally visits the monastery winery where that wine from the hotel minibar in Jordan that so inspired him was made, but discovers the monks have since hired a winemaker from outside and no longer make the wine themselves; his experience from nine years earlier was now gone forever.
Among other excursions he visits the Caucasus, considered the likely place of origin of wine grapes and the wine made from them. While several countries have their advocates, and we'll likely never know for sure, Georgia currently has the strongest claim. Begos explores their ancient varietals and their rediscovery of qvevri, clay amphorae without handles, as vessels for wine making. He also notes the spread of such vessels beyond Georgia. (I have California wines made in amphorae.)
He further explores the role and evolution of yeast, the other key ingredient besides grapes for making wine. This includes the choice between native and commercial yeasts, a matter of disagreement among wine makers.
In addition to being an exploration of the history of wine it is also an exploration of wine beyond the handful of grapes that dominate the global industry, and what we lose if we neglect them. It is interesting that publication of this book follows so closely after
, which is also about neglected grapes. While I enjoyed them both, they are quite different books. The author of the earlier book was searching for variety, and his book is very much about himself and his quest. This book is written by a journalist, and while the author is certainly a subject in his book the focus is less on him and more on history. Which book you like better will depend on which style and focus is of more interest to you. And there is nothing wrong with liking them both.
I was provided a copy for review by the publisher, but have ordered a copy of the final version for my library.
Tasting the Past: One Man's Quest to Discover (and Drink!) the World's Original Wines (English Edition) Kindle电子书
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- ASIN : B075G4LR1Z
- 出版社 : Algonquin Books (2018年6月12日)
- 出版日期 : 2018年6月12日
- 语言 : 英语
- 文件大小 : 1229 KB
- 标准语音朗读 : 已启用
- X-Ray : 未启用
- 生词提示功能 : 已启用
- 纸书页数 : 230页
- 亚马逊热销商品排名: 商品里排第197,692名Kindle商店 (查看商品销售排行榜Kindle商店)
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美国亚马逊： 19 条评论
“Whoever seeks the origins of wine must be crazy”2018年6月6日 - 已在美国亚马逊上发表
Well done, with intelligence and curiosity2019年1月9日 - 已在美国亚马逊上发表
I'm generally suspicious of first person accounts masquerading as "hard" non-fiction reality. Where one expects a serious presentation of facts, figures and background, the usual substitute is a series of opinions and impressions, often of little or no provable value. And Begos is, at first, that suspect first person narrator. However, he keeps himself in the game throughout, never opting out but digging even deeper into the subject of the origins of wine and the increasingly lost diversity of wine grape varieties. He engages the right people (Patrick McGovern, José Vouillamoz and others) and combines it with ongoing real experiences backed by intelligent commentary and observation. While the book is somewhat light on the science of flavor he does pursue the search for the origins of wine, effectively dismissing the specious concept of "noble" grapes and their superiority. An excellent read for anyone who questions the past and future of what we pour into our glasses.
A great read for the wine lover2019年5月3日 - 已在美国亚马逊上发表
What a treat to read about small vineyard offerings that are tucked away in Europe and were almost lost over the years. I have purchased three copies of this book and have given them as gifts to wine lover friends.
C. S. Williams
Uncommon New Perspective on Wine History2018年8月22日 - 已在美国亚马逊上发表
Well written, engaging book on the history of vines, grapes and some obscure grapes. A great supplement to an wine aficionado's collection.
Curl up with a glass of your favorite as you enjoy this delicious book2021年6月23日 - 已在美国亚马逊上发表
A wonderful combination of wine, adventure and a love of exploring culinary origins.