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Wine Builds Civilization

Those who might claim that wine connoisseurship is merely a rarified and unproductive pursuit of the leisure class take notice! The love of wine is contributing to society in meaningful ways, and I'm not talking about improving the health of laboratory mice. Thanks to an e-mail from fellow blogger Steve, over at The Wine Collector about a post on Mark Squires bulletin board, we now have proof that the love of wine is actually contributing to the strength and diversity of that most precious of resources: the English language.

Look up the word 'beefy' in the Fourth Edition of the American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language and you get the following definition:

BEEFY: Adjective.

Inflected forms: beef·i·er, beef·i·est

1a. Muscular in build; brawny: a beefy wrestler. b. Substantial; filling: "a rather . . . beefy, densely colored wine" (Robert M. Parker, Jr.)

2. Filled with beef.

There you have it. Wine critic Robert Parker, propping up the pillars of lexicography itself like some Titan of ancient mythology. The next time someone makes fun of you for being a wine geek, just ask them to what part of the English language they contributed a citation.

Now if I could only figure out who to lobby to get Vinography in there for petrichor....

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Required Reading for Wine Lovers

The Oxford Companion to Wine by Jancis Robinson Wine Grapes The World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson to cork or not to cork by George Taber reading between the vines by Terry Theise adventures on the wine route by Kermit Lynch Love By the Glass by Dorothy Gaiter & John Brecher Noble Rot by William Echikson The Science of Wine by Jamie Goode The Judgement of Paris by George Taber The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil The Botanist and the Vintner by Christy Campbell The Emperor of Wine by Elin McCoy The Taste of Wine by Emile Peynaud