The first edition of Essential Winetasting won numerous prizes for Best Wine Book of the Year immediately after it was published.
This new edition has 20% more pages, the whole volume (in particular the central section on Grapes and Their Wines and The Tastings) has been substantially rewritten and updated, and there are numerous new illustrations.
The maps have been completely revised and they all have up-to-date statistics for the 2014 vintage.
The nine practical Tastings have been redesigned, each now with an initial advice panel on preparatory reading from the book, plus a subsequent quiz panel as a reinforcement. The See Also boxes remain, on almost every spread, as a cross reference system for the whole volume, a uniquely powerful learning tool.
At the more advanced tasting level there is a completely new and detailed Quality Calibration Tasting on perceiving and recognizing quality, and a comprehensive section on Blind Tasting in all its forms. Additional new material covers Organic, Biodynamic and Natural Wines; Alcohol; Wine Gadgets; and Wine at Home and On the Table.
Above all the book offers a particularly clear and precise means of teaching yourself how to taste and how to get more out of your wine, whatever your level.
Michael Schuster trained in tasting in Bordeaux. In the early 1980s he helped create an award-winning wine retail business, and since then he has worked as an independent writer, consultant and lecturer, running his own wine school in north London with his wife Monika, a Cordon Bleu trained chef.
His tastings range from his foundation Beginners Course, to much sought after events each May, where he coaches students in the demanding practicalities of Master of Wine Blind Tasting.
For many years he sat on the board of The Wine Society, one of Britain´s foremost mail order merchants, and during its first ten years he chaired the Burgundy panel at Decanter´s World Wine Awards. He is a regular contributor to The World of Fine Wine, writing their annual Bordeaux en primeur report, for articles in which he was shortlisted for Feature Writer of the Year in the Louis Roederer International Wine Writers´ Awards 2008. He lectures to amateurs and professionals in the UK and abroad and in 2002 he was elected to the Academie Internationale du Vin.