36 Bottles of Wine

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 18 Jun 2019

Member Reviews

For each part of the year, the Author gives you wine suggestions, which is very unique and very helpful! Even though I love wine, I certainly need to learn more, and this is an excellent resource! One of the best I've read about wine
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This is a book about 36 bottles of wine and the meals that they complement.  It includes some nice information about the grapes, their history and where they are grown.  This would be a nice book to have in the kitchen or to give as a gift to a foodie or wine lover.  I would suggest a better cover, though.
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Everything you've ever needed about all sorts of different wines - plus recipes! Yummmm. Wine and food.
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Visuals are stunning.  The wine and food pairings are lots of fun.  Any wine lover or foodie would be thrilled to page through this book.  I really enjoyed the stories behind the wines and the recipes and the wonderful, mouth-watering descriptions.  The author exposes the reader to many unique wines that you wouldn’t otherwise have heard about.  It is also so much more than just a book of wine.  It is about stemware, camping, pregnancy, headaches and adventure.  Loved it!
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Great book for those interested in food and wine. I love the format and information the author created since it kept me engaged and learning. I can see myself recommending this often!
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I don't know if this is something you'd normally write in a review, but I love wine! However, I'm certainly not very knowledgeable about wine. I'm one of those people that buys the same 5-10 different bottles of wine, and doesn't stray very far from what I know I like. I've purchased random bottles off of the shelf simply for their packaging or name. But after reading this book I feel a little bit more comfortable trying out new wines. I think I was going about it the wrong way. Now I can try to pair my wines with the meal I plan on drinking them with. And then from there work out which countries I seem to lean towards, and which types of wine I prefer.  I am even interested in trying some of the yummy recipes included in this book. I would certainly recommend this to anyone looking to know more about delicious wines. 

Thank you to the publishers and NetGalley for providing me with a digital copy of this book and exchange for an honest review. I really appreciate it.
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36 Bottles of Wine by Paul Zitarelli
Less Is More with 3 Recommended Wines per Month Plus Seasonal Recipe Pairings

When I picked this book up I thought perhaps I would understand wine in a bit more detail. Living in Lebanon there are plenty of local wines to choose from but my palate is not as refined as some and my wine vocabulary somewhat lacking. Who but me would refer to the taste of a pricey wine as having the taste of “sweet tarts”?  

When I finished the book I came away feeling that I knew the author on a more personal level due to the fact that he shared not only his knowledge about wine and some of his favorite recipes but because he also shared anecdotes about himself, his family and some of his personal thoughts – this managed to bring both the wine and the author to life on the page. 

What did I learn?
* Which glasses to really buy
* Which wine opener to keep on hand
* what can go wrong with wines
* what vintage means and who is most likely to care about it
* the right temperature to serve wines
* some of the common wine faults and flaws and what causes them
* terms to use when describing wine
* what creates various flavors in wine
* why similar wines can vary so much in price
* and a whole lot more

I had never thought of wine in relationship to seasonal produce or what wines might pair best with meals prepared using that seasonal produce. In this book each month has three wines suggested with one white, one red and a wild card option the author feels goes along with the month. Each bottle of wine has a more detailed written description with history and location along with a chart giving information that I could see as cards in a little case to carry when wine shopping. Each month has a suggested menu using one or more of the wines in cooking the meal as well as providing a wine pairing for the meal. One new term for me was raab. I have seen it mentioned from time to time but did not know that it is actually the flowering part of the plant before it goes to seed and that cruciferous vegetables provide tasty raab between the harvest of the main vegetable and the availability of spring/summer produce. 

Did I enjoy the way this book was written? Yes
Did I learn from what I read? Definitely
Will I recommend this book to others? I already have

Thank you to NetGalley and Sasquatch Books for the ARC – This is my honest review.

NOTE: If you would like to know more about the author and his business I would suggest these websites: 

5 Stars
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There seems to be a slew of wine books coming out, but this stands out as an extremely useful guide.  That's primarily because it's written by someone who *really* knows what he's talking about when it comes to bang-for-your-buck wine regions.  I know he's spot-on in his recommendations, as many of these wines are ones that I've discovered myself and found to be incredible values: Chinon, Alto Adige Pinot Blanc, etc.  Trusting his opinions and knowledge, I'll also now be looking for Grignan les Adhemar, Fiano di Avellino, and others.  The general wine advice sections are exactly right, and the enticing recipes are a nice added bonus.
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A Harvard trained mathematician, who in his second life, become a WSET Level 4 wine expert delivers a fun, informative guide that can ultimately lead readers to trying at least 36 different types of wines within a calendar year. 

Rosé and Aperol spritz are considered summer drinks, warm ciders are designated for fall, but what about the rest of the year? Divided by month, author Paul Zitarelli suggests 3 categories of wine and includes price range, pronunciation and what region it can be found. As a bonus includes a recipe that can be paired with the wines. The recipes range from the fancy Saffron-Butter Spot Prawns to  "Pregnancy" Nachos (which has a sweet story behind its name). 

Zitarelli writes with a sense of humor that is sometimes missing from wine writing. By presenting different categories of wine instead of specific wines, it allows not only more range of wines, but more accessibility. From novice to expert wine drinkers and cooks, this is a perfect book for the kitchen collection.

I received this book from the publisher for exchange for a honest review.
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There is certainly no shortage of books that have been written about wine.  From guides with arcane rating systems of varietals, vintages, and growing regions to personal histories of great bottles that someone once drank, the selection seems endless.  So, the first thing to realize about 36 Bottles of Wine, Paul Zitarelli’s engaging entry in this category, is that it is different.  The premise of this book is compelling: For each month of the year, he suggests three different wines—a red, a white, and an “other,” such as a sparkling or dessert wine—that are seasonally appropriate and then pairs those with meals chosen to enhance the experience.  For good measure, the author also intersperses several great sundry tips about this vital (to me, at least) topic, including which stemware to use, the proper serving temperature, how to taste the stuff properly, the source of wine headaches, and the vintage year strategies that wineries follow.

Zitarelli has an absolutely delightful writing style.  His descriptions are very funny and not in the least bit pretentious.  He consistently provides thoughtful and factual insights about every wine and food pairing, providing a nice blend of historical background, tasting notes, and opinion as to why each was placed in a particular month.  Although he did not stress his intention in the Introduction, I appreciated the fact that the author went out of his way to recommend value options from lesser known growing regions whenever possible (e.g., he chose a Chenin Blanc from Montlouis instead of a more expensive option from across the Loire river in Vouvray).  Also, it is worth noting that the entire book is beautifully illustrated; the photographs of both the wine and the food are stunning and add considerably to the quality of the text.

I cannot stress enough how everything in this wonderful volume was so well described, from the various wines to the accompanying meals to the peripheral essays.  Of course, the heart of the book involves the wine itself and the vignettes I found particularly enlightening were those for Chilean Carménère, Sauvignon Blanc from Loire, U.S.-produced sparkling wine, Gruner Veltliner, Langhe Rosso, and Tavel Rosé.  (By the way, the author seems to really like Rosé, but then so do I and I learned a lot about the several examples he features.)  Also, it was impressive that among the three dozen bottles discussed, he only included one Chardonnay—and a Chablis at that—which expanded the horizons of this reader who is already far too familiar with that varietal.  At the risk of stating the obvious, 36 Bottles of Wine is my new favorite book on this topic and one that I will use frequently from now on.
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In “36 Bottles of Wine,” Paul Zitarelli, a Harvard-trained applied mathematician turned wine merchant, offers a shortlist of 36 bottles to try (3 per month--a red, a white, plus something else like a sparkling or rose) and explains why he selected these choices in a witty accessible style. Also included are 30 recipes for monthly seasonal meals that pair perfectly. Proves you don't need a vino encyclopedia when a handpicked selection delivers a world of wine ... especially when curated by such a friendly, knowledgable guide. Highly recommended! 

Pub Date 18 Sep 2018 

Thanks to Sasquatch Books and NetGalley for the review copy. Opinions are fully mine.

#36bottlesOfWine #NetGalley
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