The Top 20 Wine Books

Book wineFor one that counts the bookstore as one of his favorite places, I find it notable that I don't think I've been in one in six months. Rather, I spend huge amounts of time at the Kindle and Apple on-line bookstores downloading books to my iPad. I rather doubt I am alone in this turn of events.

The consequences of this excelerating trend are not good for bookstore owners, nor for builders of bookshelves.

But with this in mind, I also realized I hadn't looked to Amazon lately to see which wine books were the most popular with the premier book vendor in the world. I could have guessed a few of them. But not all.

A SELECTION OF PURE WINE BOOKS CURRENTLY IN THE TOP 20 OF THE "WINE" CATEGORY AT AMAZON.COM (a few of the books in the top 20 in the wine category simple aren't about wine)

#1. The Wine Bible
By Karen MacNeil, 2001

#3. What to Drink with What You Eat: The Definitive Guide to Pairing Food with Wine, Beer, Spirits, Coffee, Tea – Even Water
By Karen Page & Andrew Dorenburg, 2006

#5. The Oxford Companion to Wine, 3rd Edition
By Jancis Robinson, 2006

#7. 1001 Wines You Must Taste Before You Die
By Neil Becket & Hugh Johnson, 2008

#9. Good, Better, Best Wines: A No Nonsense Guide To Popular Wines
By Carolyn Evans Hamond, 2010

#10 The Food Lover's Guide to Wine
By Karen Page & Andrew Dorenburg, 2011

#12 Hugh Johnson's Pocket Wine Book 2012
By Hugh Johnson, 2011

#13 Sothebys Wine Encyclopedia
By Tom Stevenson, 2011

#14 World Atlas of Wine
By Jancis Robinson & Hugh Johnson, 2007

#15 From Vines to Wines: The Complete Guide to Growing Grapes and Making Your Own Wine
By Jeff Cox, 1999

#16 Cheese & Wine: A Guide to Selecting, Pairing, and Enjoying
By Janet Fletcher and Victoria Pearson, 2007

#18 Secrets of the Sommeliers: How to Think and Drink Like the World's Top Wine Professionals
By Rajet Parr, Jordan Mackay and Ed Anderson, 2010

#20 The Widow Clicquot: The Story of a Champagne Empire and the Woman Who Ruled It
By Tilar J. Mazzeo, 2009

There seems to be no stopping Karen MacNeil, whose "Wine Bible" has been sitting atop the list of the Wine category at Amazon for a long time. Interestingly, there is no Kindle Edition for this popular book. What's really interesting is that "The Widow Clicquot" makes the list. Look at the books on this list and you'll see that the vast majority are reference and How-To guides. This tells me what I've always known: The wine book market is all about education of the masses and helping them choose what to buy.

Another interesting thing to note: look at the publication date of #15. Apparently no book on winemaking for those at home has been able to push Jeff Cox's very old edition off the top of the lists. And it's interesting to note also that Hugh Johnson has three books in the top 20 list.



5 Responses

  1. Richard Auffrey - December 8, 2011

    It is strange that Drops of God, the Japanese manga about wine, is listed on Amazon under the category “Spirits” but not under “Wine.” It is #21 under Spirits and I think it might have broken the top 20 if it were in the Wine category.

  2. Richard Auffrey - December 8, 2011

    Quick addition: By Book Ranking, Drops of God would fall between #10 & #12 on the above list.

  3. PaulG - December 12, 2011

    What? Nothing by either me or Heimoff on this list?! For shame!!!

  4. Tom Wark - December 12, 2011

    Paul….It’s all about Amazon Sales…..Get promoting!!!

  5. José - December 12, 2011

    A must buy book that was recently released is The Finest Wines of Rioja and Northwest Spain: A Regional Guide to the Best Producers and Their Wines. Great current content and excellent photography. It was written by a trio of Spanish folks who have been writing for (Top Spanish Wine website)for over a decade with lots of experience and excellent palate (Some of them have won awards on international wine tasting competitions). The book is not available on Kindle or the ITunes store but it should be on any wine enthusiast shelf. Check it out.

Leave a Reply