By John ~ January 6th, 2010.
As a prolific reader, Iâ€™m regularly prowling the aisles at local bookstores, and especially the wine books section. The title of this book, Educating Peter: How Anybody Can Become an (Almost) Instant Wine Expert, is what first caught my attention. Then, when I scanned the Introduction, I knew this was a book that I wanted to read.
â€œâ€¦to see if I could sufficiently equip someone for the wider world of wineâ€”or, in Peterâ€™s case, inspire him to drink something other than what he called â€˜fatty Chardonnayâ€™.â€ â€“Author Lettie Teague on the purpose of this book
As regular Wine Peeps readers know, we have a number of friends just like Peter, and one of our missions on this blog has been to broaden their wine horizons. Peter is Peter Travers, Rolling Stones magazineâ€™s movie critic and the authorâ€™s friend and neighbor for nine years. The author, Lettie Teague, is the former Executive Wine Editor of Food & Wine magazine, as well as the writer of a monthly column, â€œWine Matters,â€ for which she won the 2003 James Beard Distinguished Writing Award.
Lettie Teague is a gifted writer, and this book was an easy read. I thought that Peter was a good foil for Lettie as she walked him through the world of wine. She even gives him a Final Exam at the end, which he passes with a grade of B.
Iâ€™ll have to admit that some of the celebrity name-dropping and super-expensive wine illustrations got old, but the education was excellent. I wouldnâ€™t recommend this book as a guide to finding specific wines, but as a good introductory overview to the world of wine; it is both humorous and informative.
Iâ€™d be remiss if I didnâ€™t point out that there is a short chapter on Oregon and Washington State wines in this book. While I donâ€™t believe that all of her comments about Washington wines are entirely accurate, I was glad that Washington and several Washington wineries and winemakers did get a deservedly good mention in the book.
You can pick up a copy of Educating Peter at Amazon.com or at your book retailer of choice. Have you already read Educating Peter? If so, please leave a comment and let us know what you thought of it.
Filed under: Wine Books