Tuesday, 12 December 2017
Jane Anson: Wine Revolution – thw World's Best Organic, Biodynamic & Natural Wines
Jane Anson: Wine Revolution: The World's Best Organic, Biodynamic & Natural Wines, jacqui small, £25, US$35, Can $47.99
Jane Anson opens her book by citing the food revolution ushered in by the opening of Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California in 1971.
'The idea of buying locally, cooking with seasonal ingredients, supporting responsible farming has become so accepted as to barely raise an eyebrow. And yet when it comes to wine, it is still considered geeky and kind of pointless to care about the same thing. After all, aren't all grapes organically grown in a field somwhere?
Well, the short answer to that is no. Just like much of the food we eat, plenty of wine is produced for a mass audience, with shortcuts taken along the way to ensure that they taste good without costing a fortune to make.
So shouldn't we start celebrating the wine makers who buck this trend, and instead apply the Chez Panisse philosophy to their vineyards? The ones who treat their workers fairly, reduce their carbon emissions, farm without pesticides? Or those who plant hedgerows to encourage biodiversity, use grapes that are indigenous to their regions and add as little as possible during the winemaking process?
There are plenty of them out there. Aubert de Villaine, Elisabetta Foradori, Pepe Raventós, Jean-Laurent Vacheron, Olivier Humbrecht, Eloi Durrbach, Christine Vernay, Nicolas Joly, David Paxton...these are winemakers who should be talked about in the same breath as chefs like Waters, Barber and the rest.
That's is what this book is about – a celebration of those committed, dedicated producers. If their wines are here, it is because they taste brilliant, will enhance what you are eating and provide a moment of shared happiness with whoever you are drinking them with. But they also come with a story, from people who care about authenticity, and want to preserve the land that nourishes their grapes.'
Jane dismisses the simple idea that it is just a question of small versus big. 'What's important is that each winemaker supports an idea of farming that is respectful of the future, and looks to capture a snapshot of time, place and culture in a glass of wine.
The majority of the book covers wines and producers that meet Jane's criteria. It includes organic, biodynamic, natural, orange and low intervention wines.
The recommended wines are arranged by style: sparkling & fresh, crisp whites; wine cocktails; rich and round whites; light & sculpted reds; full and warming reds; and finally digestifs.
The long list of photo credits include: ziolaKim Lightbody, Harry Annoni, Eric Zeziola, John Carey, Marçal Font, Rocco Ceselin and and Claude Cruells.
This is a book to help you explore and discover interesting and sometimes challenging wines.