Uncorking the Past: The Quest for Wine, Beer, and Other Alcoholic Beverages / Edition 1

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Overview

"Patrick McGovern has written his masterpiece. He takes us on an engrossing, multifaceted journey through the complex relationships between human cultures and alcoholic beverages of all kinds.
In doing so, he develops a new context for human history."—Brian Fagan, author of The Great Warming and Fish on Friday

"Fascinating, wide-ranging and erudite. When it comes to ancient beverages, Patrick McGovern is the dean of the subject."—Tom Standage, author of A History of the World in 6 Glasses and An Edible History of Humanity


In Uncorking the Past, Patrick E. McGovern charts the enchantment of human beings with alcoholic beverages from their initial discoveries of fermented honey, fruits, and grains to the perfection of elaborate means for producing, storing, transporting, and consuming treasured spirits. McGovern's gaze is truly global, spanning all the continents, but it is also microscopic, penetrating to neural pathways, genes, and molecules. This is a story told with verve and passion, yet one that is endlessly entertaining and highly informative.”—Victor H. Mair, co-author (with Erling Hoh) of The True History of Tea

“An eminently accessible, sweeping, and thought-provoking history of fermented alcohol.”—Max Nelson, author of The Barbarian's Beverage: A History of Beer in Ancient Europe

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Editorial Reviews

New Scientist
“McGovern's delving, detailed in this fascinating book, leaves little doubt that humans are born drinkers.”
Choice
“(A) magnificent study, skillfully written and well illustrated.”
Nature
“Takes his reader on a world tour, examining the archeological record for alcohol use across continents and cultures.”
California Grapevine
“Highly informative and challenging.”
Law Society Journal - John Gava

In this engaging book, Patrick McGovern gives us a world tour of the origins of alcoholic beverages.”
Gastronomica
"A remarkable book, both erudite and entertaining.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780520253797
  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Publication date: 10/30/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 348
  • Sales rank: 1,204,530
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Patrick E. McGovern is Scientific Director of the Biomolecular Archaeology Laboratory for Cuisine, Fermented Beverages, and Health at the University of Pennsylvania Museum. His books include Ancient Wine: The Search for the Origins of Viniculture, the 2004 Grand Prize winner in History, Literature, and Fine Arts, Organisation
Internationale de la Vigne et du Vin. McGovern's research on the origins of alcoholic beverages has been featured in Time, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Nature, and elsewhere.

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Preface

1. Homo Imbibens: I Drink, Therefore I Am
2. Along the Banks of the Yellow River
3. The Near Eastern Challenge
4. Following the Silk Road
5. European Bogs, Grogs, Burials, and Binges
6. Sailing the Wine-Dark Mediterranean
7. The Sweet, the Bitter, and the Aromatic in the New World
8. Africa Serves Up Its Meads, Wines, and Beers
9. Alcoholic Beverages: Whence and Whither?

Select Bibliography
Acknowledgments

Index

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