This past year, I’ve read three newly published books on wine, two of them Piemonte-specific. I was asked by the authors to write their reviews. Overall, if you’re into wine reading, I’d recommend each book. They vary somewhat in their intended readership; Wines and Foods is more adapted to an already-professed wine lover; Hungry for Wine will make you want to be a wine lover, if you aren’t already; and Labor of Love is more of a narrative, something that history lovers as well as wine lovers could thoroughly enjoy.
I received the books from the authors.
Hungry for Wine, by Cathy Huyghe
Hungry for Wine presents a heartfelt and profound way of writing about and appreciating wine. Cathy Huyghe is a great believer in the power of the story in communicating wine, and she does exactly this in the narration of twelve wineries and their producers in twelve chapters. Her background at Forbes comes through in her ability to analyze a situation well beyond the basic winery visit story.
Labor of Love, by Suzanne Hoffman
Labor of Love: Wine Family Women of Piemonte by Suzanne Hoffman is a visually beautiful read, filled with captivating stories of twenty-two winemaking families of this northern Italian region…She discovered there was a wealth of history and untold stories, particularly about the women of winemaking families. They were indispensable partners, working alongside their husbands, fathers, and sons to help successfully run the winery, yet were often unmentioned or forgotten. They made decisions in purchasing land, spearheaded marketing, tracked family finances, worked in the vineyards, and much more. All the roles that men “traditionally” played were revealed to be the traditional roles of many women, too. These are the stories Suzanne recounts in her well-written and engaging book.
The Wines and Foods of Piemonte, by Tom Hyland
The Wines and Foods of Piemonte by Tom Hyland is a thoughtful and user-friendly book that provides a wealth of information from a reputable source. A freelance wine writer for publications such as Decanter and wine-searcher.com, Tom has traveled Italy extensively in search of good wine and food. Yet, he notes, “There is no question in my mind that more great red wines are produced in Piemonte than in any other Italian region.” In his book The Wines and Foods of Piemonte, his enthusiasm is infectious and his knowledge from first-hand, long-term experience is evident.