The Ultimate Wine Lover’s Reading List

  • Wine
  • on APRIL 8, 2020
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Most of us have a bit more time on our hands these days, so what better way to make use of your day than by brushing up on your wine knowledge or diving into a new wine-related book? Whether you’re looking to delve into the history of wine, want to geek out on grapes, or are simply seeking a little light reading to pass the time, here are our top 32 wine books to add to your library.

Start Here

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Wine for Dummies – This great, unpretentious wine guide by the former head of the International Wine Center has been helping budding connoisseurs for two decades, and has sold more than a million copies.

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Wine Folly: Magnum Edition: The Master Guide – This visual reference guide to wine uses infographics and illustrations to help newbies and enthusiasts better grasp varietal profiles, how to taste wine, and food pairings.

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The New Wine Rules: A Genuinely Helpful Guide to Everything You Need to Know – From acclaimed wine writer Jon Bonné, this simple guide book takes the stress out of tasting and choosing wine by throwing out the “old rules” in order to help one better enjoy what’s in the glass.

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Wine Simple: A Totally Approachable Guide from a World-Class Sommelier – Written by world-renowned sommelier Aldo Sohm, this user-friendly book provides helpful everyday tips through easy-to-absorb visuals and text.

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Natural Wine for the People: What It Is, Where to Find It, How to Love It – James Beard Award-winner Alice Feiring sets the record straight on the growing category of natural wine through this illustrated intro to natural, organic, and minimally-invasive wine.

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What to Drink With What You Eat – A definitive guide to pairing wine with food and food with wine, this book should be kept in the kitchen for easy access.

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Wine: An Introduction – Easy to understand and unstuffy, Joanna Simon’s guide is filled with comprehensive information and is one of the best places to start a lifetime of loving wine.

Comprehensive Guides

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The Wine Bible – Roughly the same size as the actual Bible, this giant tome is one of most obsessively researched guides on the subject, and provides far more information than one wine-soaked brain could ever handle.

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World Atlas of Wine – An enormous resource for any wine lover that highlights the different winegrowing regions across the planet.

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The Oxford Companion to Wine – Coming in at more than 800 pages, British wine lover Jancis Robinson’s guide is essentially a giant encyclopedia that covers wine varieties, regions, and technical data from across the globe.

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The Sommelier’s Atlas of Taste: A Field Guide to the Great Wines of Europe – Acclaimed sommelier Rajat Parr and writer Jordan Mackay provide an in-depth reference guide to the great wines of Europe and how they should taste.

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Wine Grapes – This well-researched guide features an in-depth look at some 300 grape varieties used in winemaking, as well as buying recommendations.

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4000 Champagnes – This guide to the Champagne region of France is the ultimate resource for information about the history, culture, and winemaking practices that go into the most well-known sparkling wine, Champagne.


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Kevin Zraly’s Complete Wine Course – An expansive volume from wine expert Kevin Zraly, this book highlights his favorite wine regions and answers questions like, “How do I serve a Bordeaux?”

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How to Taste – Another classic by Britain’s Jancis Robinson, this book is an in-depth look into identifying, tasting, and profiling wine.

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Swallow This: The Progressive Guide to Wine – An irreverent and funny guide that answers hard-to-ask questions (Is it ok to add ice cubes to a glass of wine?), Mark Phillips’ book is pages of fun.

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A Year of Wine – An engaging read by sommelier Tyler Coleman that looks at different wines to serve in different seasons of the year.


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Billionaire’s Vinegar – This book tells the true story of one of the biggest scams in the history of wine, where a billionaire drops $100,000 on a bottle supposedly owned by Thomas Jefferson.

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The Widow Clicquot: The Story of a Champagne Empire and the Woman Who Ruled It – This fascinating look at the woman behind the famed Veuve Clicquot reveals her journey to becoming one of the world’s first great businesswomen.

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Wine and War: The French, the Nazis and the Battle for France’s Greatest Treasure – The true story of how French winemakers banded together against the Nazis during World War II.

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Judgement of Paris – The inspiration for the film Bottle Shock, this tome takes a look at the 1976 blind tasting competition, where Californian wines were ranked higher than their French counterparts for the first time ever, and the industry-changing controversy that ensued.

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The Story of Wine – Written by historian Hugh Johnson, this brilliant book is a delightful recounting of wine’s storied history from the ancient world to today.

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Ancient Wine – Patrick McGovern’s exploration of wine’s early history some 8,000 years ago shines an intriguing light on one of the world’s most beloved drinks.


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Adventures on the Wine Route – Wine importer Kermit Lynch waxes philosophically on his years of trying to understand the wine and people of France.

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Cork Dork: A Wine-Fueled Adventure Among the Obsessive Sommeliers, Big Bottle Hunters, and Rogue Scientists Who Taught Me to Live for Taste – Follow along as amateur drinker Bianca Bosker dives headfirst into the world of elite sommeliers who dedicate their lives to all things wine.

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Reading Between the Wines – Sometimes poignant, sometimes funny, this book by wine guru Terry Theise is a testament to his years of expertise and his unabashed love of wine.

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Liquid Memory: Why Wine Matters – Written by filmmaker and former sommelier Jonathan Nossiter, this book looks at wine as a dynamic link between generations and families.


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The Drops of God – A graphic novel that follows the quest to find 13 lost bottles of wine owned by a renowned Japanese wine critic.

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Sideways – Perhaps the most famous novel about wine (and the inspiration for the film of the same name), this funny book chronicles the misadventures of two aging friends as they drink their way across Santa Barbara Wine Country.


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The Taste of Wine: The Art and Science of Wine Appreciation – Written by Emile Peynaud, one of the world’s foremost wine scientists, this book is a deep dive into the science behind winemaking and tasting for true wine geeks.

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Natural Wine: An Introduction to Organic and Biodynamic Wines Made Naturally – Organic and environmentally sustainable wines are trending hard right now, and this clearly written book explains why, to beginners and experts alike.

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Understanding Wine Technology: The Science of Wine Explained – How that grape gets in your glass can seem like magic, but this accessible book thoughtfully explains the winemaker’s process.

Whether you’re just being introduced to the world of wine, are an advanced lover, or are just fascinated by the science and art that goes into the process, these books provide comprehensive information and poignant comments on the world of wine, and the influence it has on our lives.


WineCountry Staff


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