The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer – My Thoughts
Do you love wine? Do you aspire to one day become a wine connoisseur? If you answered yes, then a great place to start is with The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer.
Avil Beckford: Why did you write the book?
Liz Palmer: I wrote the book to introduce people to the world of champagne, not only the drink by the champagne region itself, or champagne tourism. This massive project has taken three years and has been the largest project I’ve undertaken to date.
Initial Thoughts on The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer
Liz Palmer and I are on the leadership team for the Toronto Chapter of Ellevate Network. I am the President of the Chapter and Liz is the VP of Marketing and Communications. Liz asked me to review her recently published book, The Ultimate Guide to Champagne. I couldn’t figure out why she’d ask me to review The Ultimate Guide to Champagne since I do not drink – ever. I thought about the situation long and hard. I even emailed her some questions to answer, which she did.
The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer is a reference guide, so it’s not the type of book to read cover to cover. Since I do not drink any kind of alcoholic beverages, I decided to do two things to review this book – formulate questions that the book must answer, then dip into the book to evaluate the content. Anyone who aspires to become a wine connoisseur, or is simply wanting to know more about champagne would have some basic questions.
- What is champagne?
- Where did the name champagne come from?
- What is a quick history of champagne?
- How and where is champagne made?
- Are there different kinds of champagne?
- What kinds of grapes are used to make champagne?
- What are the best champagne brands?
- On what occasions, do you serve champagne?
- What’s the size of the champagne industry?
- If I was interested in going on a tour to learn more about champagne, where should I go? Are there any kinds of festivals?
Remember that I am coming at this from the perspective as a novice, so this makes me ideal to evaluate The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer.
AB: What makes you qualified to write the book?
LP: I’m a well-respected wine journalist since 2004 and have an international reputation as a critic and judge.
My articles have appeared in: Forbes, Huffington Post, China Wine News, Beauty & The Bull Magazine, Heart Business Journal For Women, GAM on Yachting, National Wedding and Luxury Magazines both in USA and Canada; I taste thousands of wines annually at various international events and am was one of four international hosts for #ChampagneDay 2011-2016; I have served as a judge for the 2013-2016 Global Traveler’s Wines on the Wing airline wine competition (New York); 2014-2016 Michelangelo International Wine Awards (South Africa); and for the The Stevie Awards for Women in Business (New York).
My Memberships include: The Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada (WWCC); Circle of Wine Writers (UK), International Federation of Wine and Spirits Journalists and Writers (FIJEV); Wine Century Club (NYC); IFWTWA; and The British Canadian Chamber of Trade and Commerce, Association of France Canada, Ellevate Network-Toronto, and Women in Film and Television.
What is The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer About?
As mentioned before, The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer is a reference guide, therefore, it’s not the kind of book that you’ll read from start to finish. You’ll consult it when you have questions about champagne. And you will completely read some sections that you are interested in. You’ll read the table of contents, dipping into the sections that interest you, and the ones that answer the questions that you have.
The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer is over 300 pages, so there is a lot of good information. Using my 10 questions as a guide, I dipped into the book. I’m pleased to say that The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer answers all the above questions, and then some.
AB: What are two things from the book, that you'd like people to know?
There is much more to champagne than the drink – Champagne is named after the region where it is grown, fermented and bottled. This essential guide takes you to this region, explores its culture and honours its history.
Unlike any other book about Champagne, The Ultimate Guide to Champagne is the most comprehensive and visually stunning guide you’ll ever come across – in these pages you’ll discover: Over 220 Engaging Photos, Maps, Detailed Charts, and Historical Anecdotes.
If you’re interested in the history of champagne, there is a timeline from 45 AD to 2012. If you’re a numbers person, you’ll get some quick information on the size of the champagne industry. If you love to entertain, there is information on champagne and food pairings, as well as champagne cocktails to try. And you’ll learn how to store your champagne. For those who would like to go on a tour, Liz Palmer mentions tons of places in the book for you to visit. And the book also tells you where to go for tastings. And the best thing is that she’s been to these places. This adds credibility to The Ultimate Guide to Champagne.
AB: Who is your target audience?
LP: The Ultimate Guide to Champagne is highly recommended for everyone, from beginners to experts. It’s a remarkable point of reference into which any wine lover or professional can dip in and browse.
It’s the Champagne Bible for ALL wine lovers.
Final Thoughts on The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer
From a professional perspective, I have over 20 years of research and analysis experience. When I want to understand any topic of interest, one of the first places I start, is by getting an overview of the topic, then I did deeper into different areas, depending on the answers I’m seeking. Using that set of lens, The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer is a great place to start if you want to become more knowledgeable about champagne. For those who may not know, champagne is a type of wine. I figure if I didn’t know that, then there are others like me.
AB: What problem is The Ultimate Guide to Champagne supposed to solve?
LP: I have received many excellent reviews from peers and Dermot Nolan MW (Master of Wine) from Dublin states this effectively: “This is an invaluable reference for the serious student as well as the everyday wine lover, filled as it is with vital statistics and fun facts. Liz has put an enormous amount of work into this book and has striven to include all sorts of information such as places to stay and eat which makes this a one-stop shop, a must-carry for anyone travelling to the region. There is a wealth of information on the region, and the problems it faces, as well as advice on buying, storing and serving and much, much more besides.
I have to confess that I reviewed the soft-copy of this so I don’t know how much it actually weighs but it must be close to being worth its weight in gold in terms of the information contained therein. Well done, Liz – now take a well-earned rest with a glass of some of the finest bubbles you have in your cellar!”
Is The Ultimate Guide to Champagne by Liz Palmer a book that you’d like to have on your bookshelf? Let me know in the comments!