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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 Audiobook, 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 Runnette Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2011 ISBN: 9781452673431
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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. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

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

    AudioFile

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 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 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 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 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. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Karol | 2/7/2014

    " A non-fiction book that tells an interesting story of how one wine tasting event, under unusual circumstances profoundly affected the California wine industry, as well as the post '76 future of global wine production. I will enjoy browsing the shelves at the wine store after reading this piece of significant wine history and will also enjoy tasting to a fuller degree! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kerri | 1/29/2014

    " The beginning and the few pages devoted to the actual tasting are very well written and quite interesting. Unfortunately, about as much space is devoted to "Wine Spectator" like paragraphs outlining the various new world wine regions. It might have been better to simply publish the novel-like portion as a lengthy magazine article rather than pad the story for sale as a book. However, the story of how California became the stellar wine region it is today was, again, well written and quite interesting. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sally | 1/26/2014

    " A must read for anyone who enjoys wine. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kat | 1/24/2014

    " I really enjoyed this and have now moved onto another of his Books To Cork or Not to Cork. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Stacy | 1/20/2014

    " Enjoyed learning more about the history of wine and wine makers. Originally became interested as it features a "local" winery. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stella | 11/25/2013

    " It started out very interesting and turned into a kind of austere text book. It could have been a better New Yorker article than a whole book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mark | 10/9/2013

    " Had to read this after seeing the movie "Bottle Shock." Very good so far, especially explaining the history of wine and France. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Katherine | 9/26/2013

    " A great read about an actual event told by the only journalist there. He relates the facts with a great storytelling style. I really enjoyed this book and learned a lot about wine. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sue | 8/4/2013

    " Interesting in parts. Good history of the growth of Calif. wine industry. Just okay. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kathryn | 6/3/2013

    " Uber-geeky, uber-fascinating look at how one small event in 1976 turned the wine world on its head and changed the way wine is made and consumed today. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Clarke | 5/2/2013

    " excellent book, theme of the book is about the wine tasting where Californian wines beat out the French. But within the midst of all this you learn a lot about wine: growing requirements, wine regions, and such "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Chris | 11/20/2012

    " While it might have gotten a little TOO dense towards the end, I still found the entire subject matter to be really interesting. Great in-depth history about the origins of French and California wine making, and also a nice addition of the global wine trade and the future of the industry. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Debby | 9/25/2012

    " A must read if you have been to California wine country (Napa and Sonoma) or plan to go for wine tasting. It's the enlightening story of the vintners who made California wine-making what it is today. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 A | 7/10/2012

    " This is a great book to read if you want to understand how we got to where we are with wine in the US and globally. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joann | 7/4/2012

    " Almost great. A must for any wine lover. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nancy Werner | 5/22/2012

    " Great insight into wine, its commerce, its perception, and the personal experience of drinking! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Loehwing | 1/3/2012

    " Somewhere around page 250 the details became excruciating details. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stephanie | 10/15/2011

    " too technical about wine making. a wine expert wold love though "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Josh | 8/3/2011

    " I can't tell a good wine from Boon's Farm, but I like me some wine books "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mark Poons | 7/15/2011

    " This is a great book about wine in the "new world." "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Hanisaliba | 5/4/2011

    " The book was great. The details, the wine, the human side of the story. All great. I made the mistake of watching the movie. That was not good. So, grab the book, read it, and wish you were there. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jamie | 4/22/2011

    " Interesting history of Napa Valley and California as top wine producers. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Anna | 4/13/2011

    " Easy fast read for such an informative book! I learned a lot about the area where I grew up and understand better how wine has evolved over the years. If you are interested in wine this is a must! Loved how it jumped around from the Tasting to immigration to winemaking techniques. EXCELLENT! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gztripp | 2/28/2011

    " Mesmorizing tale told in fun and interesting fashion from beginning to end. A good pick -- Kathy's book club selection. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jenna | 2/2/2011

    " Super interesting subject matter, some of the "juicy" parts about the tasting itself and the backstories of the Napa winemakers were great. The writing itself was weak, a little dry. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Loehwing | 1/5/2011

    " Somewhere around page 250 the details became excruciating details. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sue | 12/29/2010

    " Interesting in parts. Good history of the growth of Calif. wine industry. Just okay. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Collin | 11/7/2010

    " great book, really piqued my interest about wine and wine-making. I'm going to look for some other books about more specific areas of wine classification and wine-making. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ken | 11/2/2010

    " Taber deciphers the complexities of French wine.
    Excellent resource!
    Easy Read!
    Salud! KGA "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Stacy | 10/31/2010

    " Enjoyed learning more about the history of wine and wine makers. Originally became interested as it features a "local" winery. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chelsea | 8/13/2010

    " Very interesting and educational at the same time. Enjoyed it a lot! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jana | 7/21/2010

    " Absolutely loved this book. If you even a slight interest in wine, it's really a great way to understand the globalization of the wine world and how amazing this event really was. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lisa | 6/19/2010

    " This was a good book to read a little bit at a time. Not a page-turner, but interesting nonetheless. I would recommend it to anyone who would like to know more about wine, but doesn't want anything too technical. "

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About the Author

George M. Taber is the author of the bestseller Judgment of Paris and To Cork or Not to Cork, which 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.

About the Narrator

Sean Runnette, an Earphones Award–winning narrator, has also directed and produced more than two hundred audiobooks, including several Audie Award winners. He is a member of the American Repertory Theater company and has toured the United States and internationally with ART and Mabou Mines. His television and film appearances include Two If by Sea, Cop Land, Sex and the City, Law & Order, the award-winning film Easter, and numerous commercials.