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Reviews and Testimonials

By Hawk W, Los Angeles, USA:

From the very beginning Mark sets the tone and purpose of "The 7 Key Wine Concepts" effectively and presents to the reader a situation that many of us have encountered: "How do I select the right wine for me?" He goes on to stress the point that one cannot place the brunt of their decision on the reviews of a wine critic or anyone else who, all things considered, is the same as any other person: he has different likes/dislikes and the reviews of a given wine tend to be personal in nature as taste is subjective. Finally, he rounds out a method of picking a similar wine if your desired choice is no longer in stock; the described method is solid and takes into account several important concepts and characteristics. All of this has happened in the introduction and serves as the perfect hook. I read on.

Mark makes the distinction between red and white varieties of wine instead of lumping them all together as a group. For those of us who like to pair our wines with food (he gets to this later and touches well on what to expect with pairings) this distinction is important. He provides an in-depth discussion of varietals and regions as well as the one-to-one and many-to-many relationships for both. He also provides an accessible discussion on wine terminology that is direct and free from the typical word-salad and nonsense of didactic lessons. The section on temperature plays into the above sections nicely as well as there are few of us who have a dedicated temperature-controlled cellar in which to store our selections; he gives practical advice here that is easily digested.

Faults are discussed and he gives some common profiles; I'm sure we have all encountered at least one on the list. He then segways directly into tasting a sample at a restaurant before committing to a bottle. He yet again presents a solid method but this time it involves ensuring the wine is not faulty. I'm a fan of swirling my reds to release the aroma so I was glad to see this included. The final concept is then discussed and it ties the entire experience of both the book and wine selection together nicely.

The writing flows well and at the end there is even a list of online resources for those interested in learning more. I'd recommend this book to fellow wine consumers without a second thought.

By Lee Johnson, Tampa FL, USA:

There is so much great information in this book! The section on Regions lays out a good way to get into wine, and the Food + Wine chapter contained some solid and creative (with chilli peppers, milk and vodka, of all things!)

But most of all, thank god for the "tasting" section! The first time I went to a fancy place with my girlfriend, they pulled out a bottle of wine, I pretended to sniff and taste it… and as soon as the waiter left my girlfriend laughed because she knew I had no idea. I looked at her and said "yep, that's wine, we'll take it." Now I know better!

In conclusion, I really liked this and am now interested to learn even more!

By Matt Forney,

I am not a wine person. While I’m not exactly in the “wine drinkers are effete faggots” camp, I tend to avoid the stuff unless I’m at a special event and/or someone else is buying. I started drinking primarily to get drunk, and wine is a laughably inefficient way to get sloshed, what with its high costs and low alcohol content. Not to mention that the entire wine culture—picking this wine to go with that dinner, tasting it, recognizing the different types—is just confusing to me. I also am not a fan of hard liquor either, aside from vodka and rum, the latter for taste and the former because it’s the only hard liquor that doesn’t give me hangovers.

Meaning I got a great deal out of The 7 Key Wine Concepts.

Mark Law’s first book, The 7 Key Wine Concepts explains wine in a simple, easy-to-understand way. The book cuts through all the snobbery surrounding wine culture and gives you the facts you need to know when it comes to buying and enjoying wine:

With wine, most people have the traditional mindset that whites should be served quite cold and reds at room temperature. By challenging tradition, you get the chance to experience a wine in a new way. White wines that would otherwise be closed when cold will become more expressive when warmed slightly. Reds that were hot and bold may seem more poised and approachable when taken down a few notches.

The 7 Key Wine Concepts is relatively brief but free of filler, explaining the most important aspects of wine in a straightforward fashion. While reading it won’t make you a wine expert overnight, it will definitely help you more easily enjoy wine. Not only that, the book helped me make sense of aspects of wine culture that made zero sense to me as an outsider. For example, one of the book’s chapters discusses the logic of why certain types of wines are best paired with specific types of foods.

If you’re looking for a brief and dirty introduction to wine, The 7 Key Wine Concepts is a must-buy.

About The Author

Hello, my name is Mark Law. I am the writer at Rational Wine and proprietor of the personal wine profiling service, Consult Wine.

I have performed as a sommelier, wine advisor and consultant for many years. After thousands conversations with many wine enthusiasts I have finally broken down what I believe to be the 7 most important factors in wine selection.

To help remove the mystery while retaining the magic of wine, I now offer this ebook to you.

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