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Paperback: Red, White and Drunk All Over, by Natalie MacLean

Like a good Beaujolais, MacLean's vinous peregrination is light, easily consumed but delivers a surprising amount. A gung-ho enthusiast who uses grape shears to snip her fringe during a Monterey harvest, MacLean draws a graphic parallel between drinking wine at a tasting and later at dinner: "It's like meeting a person in a noisy bar who seems interesting, but when you bring him home he doesn't get quieter or shut up." From decapitating champagne with a sword to the life-changing effect of Chateau Latour, MacLean reminds us that wine writing should be as pleasurable as its topic.