Sunday, June 28, 2020

The Beginner's Guide to Wine

Anyone who knows me, knows that I love wine. In fact, it once took my sister and I two weeks to get to California because when we saw a vineyard, we stopped. Each afternoon, my husband and I sit by our pool and talk and often, I enjoy a glass of wine. Do I know anything about wines? Of course I do, I like the taste and that's about it.  Now, for my husband, that is a totally different story and he takes pride in knowing a thing or too. 

Today's book by Jason Arnold, "The Beginner's Guide Wine," is exactly what I need. Now, maybe I can learn a thing or two. Enjoy learning about the book and meeting Jason Arnold.

A Beginner's Guide To Wine Paperback – June 26, 2020

by Jason Murray Arnold (Author)

This short book will serve as a guide to help you understand the basic types of wine and common terminology so that you can go from sounding like a beginner to a more refined individual. It will not make you an expert and certainly not an oenophile. That is something that requires years of tasting and practice. Yet, even the experts had to start somewhere. In this book, we will start with the basics, including the answer to that oh so important question, "what is wine?"

Tell your readers a little about yourself, where you grew up, where you live now, where you went to school etc. Let them get to know the personal you.

The place I that call home sweet home is Missouri. I'm from Springfield but currently live in Clayton outside of St. Louis. I earned my Bachelor's and Master's degrees in business at Washington University. I suppose you could even call me a Harvard graduate if you count executive education.

But what is a guy with so much business education doing writing a book on wine? Well, that's easy, I've always been passionate about wine. It's one of several things I enjoy. They other things include snow skiing and scuba diving. I guess you could say I'm a man that likes adventure and the finer things in life. Wine is something that I appreciate, like one would appreciate art. You can describe a particular wine in so many different ways. I suppose you could say each bottle is its own work of art.


What inspired you to author this book?


Well, I've had the opportunity to travel and try so many different wines. But the one thing I've learned when discussing wine with the people I've met along the way is that many of them find the basics of wine difficult to understand. I mean, with all the fancy words, it's no wonder that's true. They find it difficult to understand what makes one red so drastically different from another. So I tried to break it down as easily as I could. That's what this book is about, making the world of wine understandable to the average person. I truly appreciate everything that goes into making fine wine. And I know others will too. I wish there was a simple book on wine when I was learning. It would have made everything so much easier.

Where did you get the inspiration for your book's cover?


Well, I just wanted a cover that was simple and to the point. I don't like to complicate things. I've always viewed the cover of a book, much like the label on a bottle of wine. It's supposed to describe the contents clearly, but it's what inside that really matters.


Who has been the most significant influence on you personally and as a writer?


I'm not sure I can pick just one person. Can I choose two? My sister, Jessica, definitely helped push me to share my knowledge with the world. But also, my editor, Wes Upchurch really pushed me to finish the book. His research and input is the only reason the book got finished.


What were your struggles or obstacles you had to overcome to get this book written?

Well, I'd have to say that the hardest part is deciding what information to include and what to exclude. The Beginner's Guide to Wine is supposed to be an introductory work, but I could go on and on about the nuances of winemaking. Luckily a solid outline kept me on point. I wanted to include enough information to satisfy all the basic answers a newbie would have without going overboard. One of the motivations for writing this book is to encourage the reader to look further. I want them to explore wine for themselves.


Tell your readers about your book.


Sure. It features ten chapters of information on viticulture, oenology, and wine appreciation. I first introduce the reader to wine, starting with the rich history of wine production and describe all that goes into producing a glass of quality wine. I take the reader step by step through the process, starting with the growing and harvesting the grapes all the way to fermentation and enjoyment.

Some of the topics I cover are wine classification, the different styles of wine, and regional differences. I describe proper etiquette and provide a list of resources for further education.
The Beginner's Guide to wine covers most popular wine-producing regions in Europe and the Americas. My goal is that by the time someone is done reading it that, he'll better grasp of the terminology surrounding wine and be able to make an educated selection for his own enjoyment.

Who is your target audience, and why?


Well this book is for any aspiring wine connoisseur. Someone who wants to better understand and appreciate wine will get a lot out of it. I'm not saying it'll make you an expert, but it will make the reader far more knowledgeable.

What do you consider your greatest success in life?


I like to believe that my greatest success has yet to come. I'm always striving for greater success. I think that it is a sad thing when people see their best days as behind them.


What one unique thing sets you apart from other writers in your genre?


In the wine world, they're far too many critics. A lot of writers want to tell their readers what makes a good wine. But the only thing that really matters is whether or not you personally enjoy the wine. I think a better model is writing content that empowers the reader to make their own choices about a particular wine rather than tie a wine's value to the critics' bottle-by-bottle reviews. So many people that write about wine come with preconceived biases and push their opinion. Instead of feeding people my opinions about a particular wine, I'd rather educate the reader to make up their own mind.