The Sommelier's Atlas of Taste: A wholesale Field Guide sale to the Great Wines of Europe outlet sale

The Sommelier's Atlas of Taste: A wholesale Field Guide sale to the Great Wines of Europe outlet sale

The Sommelier's Atlas of Taste: A wholesale Field Guide sale to the Great Wines of Europe outlet sale
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Product Description

Winner of the prestigious André Simon Drink Book Award

The first definitive reference book to describe, region-by-region, how the great wines of Europe should taste. This will be the go-to guide for aspiring sommeliers, wine aficionados who want to improve their blind tasting skills, and amateur enthusiasts looking for a straightforward and visceral way to understand and describe wine.

In this seminal addition to the wine canon, noted experts Rajat Parr and Jordan Mackay share everything they''ve learned in their decades of tasting wine. The result is the most in-depth study of the world''s greatest wine regions ever published. There are books that describe the geography of wine regions. And there are books that describe the way basic wines and grapes should taste. But there are no books that describe the intricacies of the way wines from various subregions, soils, and appellations should taste. Now, for the first time ever, you can learn about the differences between wines from the 7 grand crus and 40 premier crus of Chablis, or the terroirs in Barolo, Champagne, and Bordeaux. Paying attention to styles, winemakers, soils, and the most cutting-edge of trends, this book explains how to understand the wines of the world not in the classical way, but in the modern way--appellation by appellation, soil by soil, technique by technique--making it an essential reference and instant classic.


Best Wine Books of 2018 —  New York Times

"This is the sort of thought-provoking book that I will return to again and again."
Eric Asimov, New York Times

“It isn''t easy to produce fresh insights and fascinating commentary on some of the most well-trampled wine regions on earth, but sommelier-turned- wine producer Rajat Parr and writer Jordan Mackay have managed to do just that, and to do so with style; I expect this book to find its way on to the shelves of wine drinkers and collectors as well as those of aspiring sommeliers.”
—Victoria Moore, André Simon Awards assessor

"This book is both the wine novice''s and expert''s dream, packed full of everything you need to know about the word''s best wine. Rajat Parr and Jordan Mackay break down what makes each one special and unique, and what to look for when it comes to awakening your palate. All that''s left to do is open a bottle you''ve never tried before and explore the possiblities."
Ayesha Curry, author of the best-selling cookbook The Seasoned Life

" The Sommelier''s Atlas of Taste is a must-read book for anyone looking to enhance their personal wine journey. Rajat Parr and Jordan Mackay manage to balance encyclopedic information and practical advice with one-of-a-kind storytelling about the people and places shaping the world of wine today. Even more impressive, they share this wisdom and passion in a refreshingly approachable way." — Gary Vaynerchuk, wine critic and entrepreneur

"The Sommelier''s Atlas of Taste is an essential exploration of what makes the world''s great regions, producers, and wines delicously compelling, and why. Rajat Parr and Jordan Mackay relentlessly examine geographical and geological differences, cultural shifts, and producer philosophies through the lens of taste. This book charts their glorious adventures, taking the reader with them into the cellars and vineyards of the most famous producers, and provides rare access and a best-of guide through thoughtful conversations and breathtaking photographs." 
Jordan Salcito, beverage director of Momofuku and founder of Ramona wine

"A fascinating voyage of wine discovery...Rajat Parr-an iconic sommeleir turned cult wine producer with an exceptional tasting ability and superb understanding of the major wine regions- and coauthor Jordan Mackay are well placed to discuss the complex topics of taste and terroir...A wonderful book that should be included in the book collections of any serious wine lover or wine professional."
-Gerard Basset, master sommelier

"It''s a comprehensive book that''s perfect for any oenophile--or anybody wanting to become one." 
Condé Nast Traveler

"...a fascinating look at a world of after-hours tastings and tenacious debates, at the wines that many sommeliers care most about, and at restaurant service from an insider''s view. We meet many unusual and charismatic personalities, not least of whom is Mr. Parr... in the tradition of the best sommeliers, useful lessons and tips are conveyed painlessly and entertainingly."
New York Times

"Parr and Jordan open a window onto the workings of a great sommeliers mind. . . .The result is part history lesson, part insider''sguide to the best producers and best buys, but, most of all, it''s a testament to all the hard work that goes into being a greatsommelier."
Wine & Spirits

"If the key to understanding great wine is to drink it as often as possible, The Sommelier''s Atlas of Taste comes in a close second. Rajat Parr and Jordan Mackay have jeroboams of experience when it comes to growing, selling, and deciphering the planet''s most extraordinary bottles, and this book offers two things that others rarely include: genuine insight and good taste."
Dan Keeling and Mark Andrew, founders of Noble Rot  magazine

About the Author

RAJAT PARR is the wine director of the 17-restaurant Mina Group, which includes properties in Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, and Washington, DC. His program at the flagship restaurant in San Francisco holds a Wine Spectator Grand Award. He is also the cofounder of the wine labels Domaine de la Cote, Sandhi, and Evening Land Vineyards. JORDAN MACKAY is a James Beard Award-winning writer who lives in Napa Valley and travels extensively, speaking and writing about wine, spirits, and food. His work has appeared in Food & Wine, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Decanter, the Art of Eating, Wine & Spirits, and many others. He is the author of Passion for Pinot and coauthor of James Beard Award-winner Secrets of the Sommeliers (also with Rajat Parr), Two in the Kitchen (with Christie Dufault), New York Times bestseller Franklin Barbecue (with Aaron Franklin), and Knife (with John Tesar).

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.


? is the most vexing question in all of wine. Most attempts to explain precisely why a wine tastes the way it does are doomed to fail. But unlike the great philosophical questions—involving life, God, and the universe—with wine you actually can talk to the maker. Like the rest of us, the vigneron (a French term indicating the person who grows the grapes and makes the wine, our preference over English’s “winemaker,” though we will use both throughout this text) may not be able to explain why the wine tastes the way it does, but obviously she can at least offer some detail and perspective. 

So this book takes its direction from the way Raj constructs his life—essentially a nonscientific, yet rigorous and impassioned road-tripping inquiry into how wine tastes and why. I’ve spent much of the last eighteen years of my life doing similar work as a wine and food writer, though certainly not with the same intensity (no one comes close to Raj in that), so it made sense to do this together and record it in book form. 


Now, a few words on the title. Traditionally, an atlas is a collection of maps. Thumbing through this volume, you will quickly see it’s not a traditional atlas. Once again, we’re employing some poetic license and using the word metaphorically, for what we’re generally depicting are not roadways or topographies or constellations—the classic subjects of atlases—but the taste of wine—and how do you render a map of taste? You do it in the same confounding way people have always been doing it—with words. Especially when it comes to wine, language is personal and imprecise, but it’s all we’ve got at this point, reminding us of the famous line from music criticism: “Writing about music is like dancing about architecture.”

Now, about the other big word in our title—“taste.” Taste has many definitions, and in this book, we invoke many, if not all of them. Yes, we are writing about the taste of wine. Yes, we are also chronicling a series of journeys dedicated to the act of tasting wine (and food). Sometimes we had only a taste, though on other occasions we drank the whole bottle. Furthermore—and this is important—the subjects chosen here were curated in accordance with our sense of taste. Some of you might think we have bad taste, and some of the wines we discuss may not be to your taste, but luckily Raj and I have largely similar tastes when it comes to wine, so we readily agreed on almost all of the inclusions in this book. 

Taste is a very complicated physical and mental action into which science has invested considerable investigative energy in recent years. Traditional wine writing has been careful to differentiate between a wine’s aromas, detected by the nose, and a wine’s flavors, detected in the mouth. As we will discuss in more detail in chapter 1, this distinction is in many ways outdated, given that most of a wine’s flavors are detected through the back of the throat, by the olfactory system. Furthermore, we really did try to focus in many of our experiences on the wine’s texture or mouthfeel, using our tongues to feel for a wine’s structure and texture to determine whether certain soils imbued wines with common attributes. So in this case, we were trying to use our tongues more than our noses. But writing about texture is even more “dancing about architecture” than writing about flavor, as our language has very few words for texture. 
After every visit, we felt we’d accrued knowledge we didn’t have before. And then we forgot half of it (or at least I did) because . . . wine. The overall impression of such a long trip was a palpable sense of the passion driving the small producers of Europe. Certainly, passion can exist in larger-production operations and in big companies. But it’s nothing like what you feel from the people who are pruning the vines and tending the wines. In turn, we felt energized and excited about what we witnessed. Despite whatever’s going on in the rest of the world, lots of inspiring things are happening in the classic wine regions of Europe. We hope this book gives you a sense of that. 

—Jordan Mackay

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