Review – Evolution of a Wine Drinker by Alicia Bien

Reviewed by Frankie


Fact Forward, Comedic Notes, Sweet Delicate Finish

As a somewhat novice wine drinker myself, I was eager to read Alicia Bien’s anecdotal adventures of wine drinking. This book is colorfully cast into alphabetized chapters; beginning with Army, and ending with Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah! It’s a short crisp read that I found as refreshing as Moscato on a hot California day.

What I adored about this book, was Bien’s ability to share her vast oenological knowledge (that means WINE knowledge, see you learned something already), without coming off as haute or droll. She quite masterfully explains the different varietals of grapes, the regions where wine is grown, the process of making wine from vine to glass, and playfully teaches the importance of not judging a wine by its packaging.

During all of this instruction, the reader is regaled with the writer’s personal experiences with wine. She takes you on a journey from the Midwest, to Belgium, from California to Italy, from Spain to Washington State, and of course…to France! Bien’s relationship with wine begins with a wine class, traverses the globe from Chateau to Quintas, and wine bar to wine club. Most importantly, she closes her story by conveying that wine should, simply, be enjoyed simply.

As Captain Sargent would say “it’s a manner of enjoying the finer things in life, because it’s one of the finest things in life”.

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