The Makers of American Wine: A Record of Two Hundred Years
University of California, 2012 (2012)
Reviewed by Bob Walch
his book provides an interesting account of American viticulture by discussing a number of people who made a difference in creating what that industry is today.
hile Robert Mondavi and Julio and Ernest Gallo are familiar to most wine enthusiasts, other individuals mentioned by the author are perhaps less well known. You may not be familiar with Jean Jacques Dufour, Nicholas Longworth, and George Husmann but they helped pave the way for the vintners who followed them.
any Californians have heard of Charles Kohler of Kohler and Frohling since he was instrumental in getting the state's wine to dinner tables throughout the country in the late 1800s. On the other hand, the odds are that the important contributions of Andrea Sharboro, Percy T. Morgan, and Paul Garrett are less well known.
ome of the other wine luminaries mentioned by the author include Frank Schoonmaler (Almaden), Maynard Amerine (U.C. Davis), Dr. Konstantin Frank (Vinifera wines) and winemaker Cathy Corison. Besides these individuals, there are also chapters dedicated to two of the iconic families of the industry - Mondavi and the Gallo clan.
ver 35 illustrations help flesh out the narrative and provide images of the principle personalities mentioned here.
ven the most knowledgeable oenophile will find this an enlightening and entertaining read. Thomas Pinney's engaging style makes this a book to savor while, perhaps, enjoying a glass or two of your favorite wine.
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