The two books that were recently sent to me could not have been more different. While the Kevin Zraly book was more educational, the New York Times Book of Wine is more of an anthology. That’s not to say that there’s not an education to be had from reading it, only that perhaps that isn’t the intent of the book.
The book covers more than 30 years of wine writing that has appeared in The New York Times, and features a foreword by Eric Asimov, one of the more respected voices in the the world of wine. Over 15 chapters, that’s 156 pieces if you’re wondering, topics range from writing about wine, to different wine regions, winemaking, and anything else you could imagine that relates to wine, viticulture, and grapes.
The beauty of this book is that the pieces tend to be short, between 3 and 5 pages in most cases, meaning it’s easy to sit down and read through a handful that interest you without investing too much time. Conversely, the anthology nature of the book makes it unlikely that you’ll sit down and read this from cover to cover, though kudos to you if you happen to.
This book will, if nothing else, make you jealous of the men and women that have access to amazing wines that you and I simply don’t, and make their living writing about wine. The New York Times Book of Wine is definitely a great gift for the wine lover in your life, especially with the holidays coming up. At more than 550 pages it’s certainly not something you’ll want to carry around with you, but leaving it on a nightstand for a bit of reading certainly isn’t a bad place for it.
Editor’s Note: I received this book as a free sample.