This book is aimed at the person with no formal scientific training, yet who is interested in the science behind wine and wants to know the mechanism behind the complex transformations that take place. Scientific terminology has been kept to a minimum and an attempt has been made to use everyday words and phrases. Indeed, there are places where the scientist might raise the eyebrows, places where perhaps science has had to give way to an easy understanding of a complex principle. For this I make no apologies, as this book is not intended as a learned treatise on winemaking and I have put communication of ideas before correct scientific protocol.
The first edition was published in 2000 as a result of cajoling by an eminent wine writer for a book about the science of wine for the non-scientist, and it gained immediate popularity for its easy style. There was no attempt at producing a fine literary work, or a volume that could displayed on the coffee table. It was merely a book that any lover of wine, whether for study or simply for increased enjoyment could pick up, read and understand.
The second edition, published in 2005, refined and improved upon the first. Together they have sold over 13,000 copies in 33 countries of the world.
In this third edition the information has been brought up-to-date so that this book remains the mainstay for those who are studying for the Diploma Examination of the Wine and Spirit Education Trust or the examination for membership of the Institute of Masters of Wine. The text has also been expanded to include more information on the making of the major styles of the wines of the world, which should be of interest to those who are not engaged in study, but who have an enquiring mind and therefore want to know the mechanisms behind their production. But, above all, I would hope that all lovers of wine will find something of interest, something that will enhance their enjoyment of what is to me the world's best and most healthy beverage.