Book review: Thomas Pellechia's "Wine".

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Book review: Thomas Pellechia's "Wine".

Postby Bob Ross » Thu Aug 03, 2006 7:04 pm

Thomas Pellechia:"Wine: The Eight-Thousand-Year-Old Story of the Wine Trade."

Strongly recommended for anyone interested in the history of the wine trade.

Regards, Bob
Last edited by Bob Ross on Tue Jul 29, 2008 1:43 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Book review: Thomas Pellechia's "Wine".

Postby Ed Draves » Thu Aug 03, 2006 7:29 pm

great review. I would like to mention that I'm excited to loan the boo kto my mom who does not like wine (except a little Chateau LaFayette Reneau Riesling on holidays) but is a retired history teacher and a history buff. She might like the book as much as I do.
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Chiming In...

Postby TomHill » Thu Aug 03, 2006 10:12 pm

My copy arrived Monday and, even though I got home from my tasting at 11:00, dead tired, I made the mistake of picking it up to browse thru when I went to bed. Didn't put it down until 2:00 am. Tuesday was a draggy day, I tell you.
I first approached the book w/ a bit of trepidation. I am not fond of history. Long/boring lectures in old lady Congdon's 8'th grade history class pert near extinguished my love of history (the only redeeming feature of her class was that I sat right behind Susan Davis, my hearthrob from 4'th grade on....EiYiYi...whatta view!!)
But once I started reading it, I was hooked. It's a fascinating read I must say. It's also amazing how little things change over the yrs...nay...centuries. They were focused on wine futures, single vnyd sites, revered official wine tasters, boom & bust cycles, whining amongst consumers about insane wine prices.... waaaay back in the BC yrs. Only thing's that miissing back in those days was rants and whining on electronic wine boards... but I expect they had an equivalent.
I'm only about 1/3'rd thru now, but can't put it down.

Congratulations, ThomasP on a very well-done and well-written book. I expect the research was a hurclean task. It's nice to read something from someone who's followed wine from the very start. Only thing that's missing, Thomas, is my WTN on the FaustianVnyd Falernum. Tasted that twice from amphorae. Both times I scored it a 93.
Even better, his picture is on the back cover leaf. Quite a handsome gent I must say....more so than most of the ol' reprobates that hang out here on WLDG!!
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Re: Chiming In...

Postby Howie Hart » Thu Aug 03, 2006 10:45 pm

My copy arrived last Saturday, along with "Chef On Fire" by Chef Carey, but I haven't had the chance to even look at either one yet. I'll post about both as I get to them.
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Postby Dan Smothergill » Thu Aug 03, 2006 11:35 pm

Might Tom's book be purchased through here at a discount?

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Re: Chiming In...

Postby Thomas » Thu Aug 03, 2006 11:37 pm

Thank you Bob. You have a quote or two that I could have used in the book, had I found them.

Tom, I used to hate history in school. It wasn't until I got into wine and started traveling when I realized the importance of history. Then, I read Barbara Tuchman books; she made me realize that history writing could also be literature.
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Re: Chiming In...

Postby Bob Ross » Fri Aug 04, 2006 12:10 am

You are very welcome, Thomas.

As a thank you for the great suggestions to the WLP library, I'ld like to send you a copy of Thomas George Shaw's book. There aren't many books by wine merchants that are more than autobiographies -- you called that exactly right in your book -- but Shaw's is a wonderful exception. I know you'll enjoy the history of both wine and English society as seen through his eyes.

Send me a shipping address via my email at

Washington's correspondence is online at the Library of Congress -- a vast correspondence with a relatively few wine references. I particularly like this letter written a few months before his death:

If you have determined, to build a house or houses of similar elivation with those I am contracting for, you shall be extremely welcome to avail yourself of my end wall and to run up your Chimneys accordingly, without any allowance being made therefor (which I cannot accept) as the kindnesses I have received from you greatly overpays any little convenience or benefit you can derive from my Wall.…Upon conversing more fully with Mr. Blagden upon the frontispiece of the Doors, and considering that to make them of Stone instead of Wood, will add durability to the work, I have agreed to allow the difference, viz $150 that they may be executed with the latter. And as he represented in strong terms, the wishes of Mr. Francis that a part of the Cellars should be vaulted, for the benefit of Wine, I have agreed to this also. He thinks the additional cost may amount to $100 dollars more; but having made no estimate thereof it shall be charged at what it really stands him.

Washington was a real estate investor -- and a wine lover -- to the very end. :-)

Regards, Bob
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