Wine-searcher.com has, since they branched out from being a pure wine price search engine to also be a wine news site, rapidly become one of the most read wine sites in the world. So we were very glad to see that they had decided to review our new book Biodynamic, Organic, and Natural Winemaking; Sustainable Viticulture and Viniculture.
We were even happier when we read the overwhelmingly positive review by Robert Anding, under the title An Ode to Organics Without the Dogma.
Here are some excerpts from the review:
“How refreshing […] to find a book that doesn’t simply repeat the usual sermons about organic or biodynamic wine and how it is so much better than everything else. […]
This book by Britt and Per Karlsson is perfect for people who want to learn about organic and biodynamic wines, and their ultra-orthodox relatives, natural wines. It neatly explains the differences between them and explains the various processes that are used in their production. […]
[I]t explain[s] many of the procedures that are so common in viticulture today, and why they are necessary to produce grapes. It also dispel[ls] the romantic “everything was better yesterday” notion that doesn’t take into consideration the factors – industrialization and disease – that means winemaking has changed more in the last 150 years than in its whole previous history. […]
What I appreciate about the book is that the authors cover the issues objectively and are not just overcommitted enthusiasts trying to convince everybody that organic or biodynamic wine is the “real deal”. They give the details of how each system works and leave it for the readers to decide which philosophy they like most and find more sustainable. […]
They also raise some pertinent questions. For example, in controlling diseases, given that the organic sprays do not last as long on the vine as conventional ones meaning that you have to spray more frequently, is this better for the environment? […]
I really enjoyed the book and I would recommend it to every wine lover who wants to understand what is going on in the vineyard.”
You should read the full review by Robert Anding here on Wine-searcher, An Ode to Organics Without the Dogma, since it is full of pertinent comments and useful observations.
We are particularly glad the way that Robert Anding sees the book as a “balanced and level-headed” text (as it says in the introduction), since that was exactly our ambition with the book. There are far too many texts that are very partisan and polemic on organics, biodynamics and “natural” wine, but very few that explain what these methods actually mean. There are also far too many writers, as well as wine practitioners (!), as Mr Anding also points out in his review, which simply misunderstand or misrepresent these ways of making wine.
Organic and biodynamic winemaking, and perhaps also, but to a significantly lesser extent, “natural wine”, are important trends in today’s world of wine. Obviously we think that this is an overall positive development but it is not at all as simple as just black and white; good or bad.
So if you want to understand what this is, and what difference it makes in winegrowing and winemaking, then we hope that you will read our book, and then make up your own mind on what you think is good and less good.
Read more on Biodynamic, Organic and Natural Winemaking here. This is our first book to be translated into English. We have so far written four books on wine. Perhaps one day you will also be able to read some of the others, for example The Creation of a Wine that explains the work in the vineyard and in the wine cellar. It has been very successful in its original (Swedish) edition.
This post is also available in: Swedish