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While there are plenty of wine books on the market to educate the novice, Cochran, a certified sommelier who owns her own wine catering business in San Francisco, offers a delightful addition. What sets this work apart from other wine guides is its light touch that engages, entertains, and teaches amateurs about wine appreciation. Cochran packs in a lot of commonsense, tips, and solid advice for the novice short on time but keen on getting up to speed on the essentials of wine. The usual topics are covered, including vintages, food pairing, serving, storing, and buying, in breezy, hip, and easy-to-digest prose. She does a good job debunking myths surrounding cork vs. screw cap and table wines. An appendix includes phonetics tips for difficult-to-pronounce wine terms and recommended producers in various regions. The author gives budding wine enthusiasts enough information to get started in just a few sips. Recommended for public libraries.