Bordeaux, Burgundy: A Vintage Rivalry

Bordeaux, Burgundy: A Vintage Rivalry


By (author) Jean-Robert Pitte, Translated by M. B. Debevoise

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  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Format: Hardback | 268 pages
  • Dimensions: 157mm x 229mm x 25mm | 476g
  • Publication date: 7 July 2008
  • Publication City/Country: Berkerley
  • ISBN 10: 0520249402
  • ISBN 13: 9780520249400
  • Edition: 1
  • Illustrations note: 4 maps
  • Sales rank: 398,269

Product description

Seeking to penetrate the mysteries of two great wine regions - 'two opposite civilizations, two distinct ways of feeling' - Jean-Robert Pitte embarks upon an evocative and fascinating exploration of the land, people, and wines of Bordeaux and Burgundy. His account is a rich tapestry of terroir, history, culture, and economics from Roman to modern times. The unique qualities of the wines of each region, Pitte believes, cannot be entirely explained by the differences in their physical environments: they have social origins as well.Beginning with an entertaining look at the remarkable variety of insults exchanged by partisans of the two regions, Pitte delves into the key role played by medieval monks, dukes, and peasant vignerons in building their respective reputations and in creating the rivalry between bourgeois Bordeaux and earthy Burgundy that we know today. His sparkling, fair-minded narrative, engaging the senses and the mind alike, conveys a deep appreciation of two incomparable winegrowing cultures, united despite their differences by a common ambition to produce the best wines in the world.

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Author information

Jean-Robert Pitte is professor of geography and president of the University of Paris IV-Sorbonne. He is the author or editor of twelve previous books, including French Gastronomy and History of the French Landscape.

Review quote

"Pitte, a specialist in wine geographies, relates a long and fierce oenophile war in this charming history."--New Yorker "Full of fascinating digressions into the history of the wines, the areas, and the people."--Art Info Brilliant--The Guardian "Whatever you may know about these two great wine regions, you'll learn something new."--Decanter "History buffs will especially savor Pitte's extensive report on France's most legendary wine regions."--The Bloomsbury Review

Table of contents

List of Maps Preface to the American Edition 1. Weighing the Evidence 2. Markets and Consumers 3. The Physical Environment 4. Incomparable Wines Conclusion. Farewell to Parochialism Notes Bibliography Index