Sunday, December 30, 2018

Review: Wine Folly: Magnum edition - The Master Guide by Madeline Puckette

Wine Folly: Magnum Edition – The Master Guide
by Madeline Puckette and Justin Hammack [641.22 Puc]

My co-worker Lisa V., from Eiseley Branch, recommended this title during our final appearance on KFOR’s “Problems & Solutions” “book chat” episode in November, and I told myself to keep an eye open for it. When I saw one on our “New Books” display, I snagged it — and I’m glad I did.
Madeline Puckette is one of the brains behind the website This book is an expansion on a previous wine guide that was published (based on’s content). This particular book is a marvel — it is jam-packed with color infographics, charts and useful information for anyone who generally enjoys wine, but doesn’t know how to determine which wines they may appreciate the most. Section 1 is “Wine Basics” and features handy background info about “What is Wine?”, “Wine Traits” (including the five most important elements — body, sweetness, tannin, acidity and alcohol), how to go about “Tasting Wine”, “Handling, Serving and Storing Wine”, and “How Wine is Made”. Section 2 is “Food & Wine”, covering how wines best pair with dozens of types of food, and how best to cook with wine. Second 3 is “Grapes & Wines”, and takes up 50% of the book — each type of “named” wine is given a page (sometimes two) with detailed background on the traits of that wine, what it pairs best with, where it comes from, how it’s made, what wines are similar to it, and more. This is the bulk of the book. Section 4 is “Wine Regions” and features entries showing which wines come from which regions of the world, and what wines from each region are recommended.

There are a lot of wine guides out there, but I find this one particularly helpful due to the “infographic” style it uses — everything is explained in clear, easy-to-understand images and terms. And if a term is unfamiliar, it’s probably simply defined in the appendix of terminology at the back of the book. If you’re only passingly familiar with wines or are only just starting to explore the differences in the hundreds of wines available to you, I highly recommend this handy volume.

[If you enjoy this, you may also wish to try Wine Isn’t Rocket Science, by Ophelie Neiman, Wine for Dummies, by Sterling Roig or Reverse Wine Snob, by Jon Thorson.]

[ official web site ]

Recommended by Scott C.
Bennett Martin Public Library

Have you read this one? What did you think? Did you find this review helpful?

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