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Download Judgment of Paris: California vs. France and the Historic 1976 Paris Tasting That Revolutionized Wine Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Judgment of Paris: California vs. France and the Historic 1976 Paris Tasting That Revolutionized Wine, by George M. Taber Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (556 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: George M. Taber Narrator: Sean Runnett Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History houses, amid its illustrious artifacts, two bottles of wine: a 1973 Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon and a 1973 Chateau Montelena Chardonnay. These are the wines that won at the now-famous Paris Tasting in 1976, where a panel of top French wine experts compared some of France’s most famous wines with a new generation of California wines. Little did they know the wine industry would be completely transformed as a result, sparking a golden age for viticulture that extends beyond France’s hallowed borders to Australia, Chile, South Africa, New Zealand, and across the globe.

Then Paris correspondent for Time magazine, George M. Taber recounts this seminal contest and its far-reaching effects, focusing on the three gifted unknowns behind the winning wines: a college lecturer, a real estate lawyer, and a Yugoslavian immigrant. At a time when California was best known for cheap jug wine, these pioneers used radical new techniques alongside time-honored winemaking traditions to craft premium American wines that could stand up to France’s finest.

With unique access to the main players and a contagious passion for his subject, Taber renders this historic event and its tremendous aftershocks in captivating prose, bringing to life an eclectic cast and magnificent settings. For lovers of wine and anyone who enjoys a story of the entrepreneurial spirit of the new world conquering the old, this is an illuminating and deeply satisfying tale.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A vivid, robust story that goes down smoothly.”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “An intoxicating indulgence for Sideways fans, and an education for would-be wine sophisticates.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “While the outrage of some of the judges is funny, this is a serious business book, too, sure to be required reading for American vintners and oenophiles.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Sean Runnette is clearly enamored by the subject as he lends eloquent emotion to vine-to-bottle creations.”


Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Laure | 2/15/2014

    " Interesting book but I would recommend it only for someone who is truly a wine enthusiast and connoisseur as the author covers a lot of wine history, different varietals, terroirs, etc. It got too technical and in-depth for me and so got a bit tedious. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Heather | 2/13/2014

    " fun and interesting read for anyone who likes wine or just likes dreamers. Perfect if you're planning a trip to Napa/Sonoma "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Holly | 2/9/2014

    " The story was interesting but would have been better with 100 fewer pages. Read the book, don't see the movie. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Emily | 2/7/2014

    " Good read on the revolutions of the international wine trade, and the significance of the CA wines' victories over the French wines. Favorite part: the judge who was convinced that CA v. France tasting was some British plot to destroy the French wine industry. "

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About the Author

George M. Taber is the author of the bestseller Judgment of Paris, which recounts the story of the famous 1976 event when unknown California wines defeated top French ones. Taber’s second book, To Cork or Not to Cork, won the Jane Grigson Award and was a finalist for the James Beard Award. Before turning to writing books, Taber was a reporter and editor with Time magazine for twenty-one years, based in Bonn, Paris, Houston, and New York.