[A] rollicking romp through the history of the Texas wine industry from its beginnings in the 15th century with vineyard plantings at Spanish missions. I knew I was going to love the book when I read the foreword by internationally known wine authority Doug Frost, who touted how much he'd enjoyed it. This is not in the wine-geek genre, although Russ does slip in some sound technical information about various Texas wines and wine in general. But he does so ina way that's an entertaining part of the tales he spins. The book is written as a series of stories piecing together the story of wine in Texas--from Russ's encounters with winemakers and grape growers to his search for the ghost vineyards of Texas to communicating with the spirit of T. V. Munson,--The Grape Man of Texas,--who saved the wine industry in Europe in the late 1800s. Russ introduces us to unique new varietals of grapes being planted in Texas, the moving tales of failures and vineyards destroyed by Pierce's Disease and the dusting off of boots to begin again. There's not a lot of swirling and sniffi ng, but there is a great cast of characters--the pioneers who believed they could do this enormous thing and just did it, creating the modern Texas wine industry. --Edible Austin
Russ talks about the Spanish origins of Texas wine, the history of Texas winemaking, and includes stories of modern day growers and entrepreneurs with his travels around the state. Besides the history being very interesting, it is also nice when you have met some of the people in person he discusses and can then understand their backgrounds. I got to the end of the book and wanted more! --Texas Wine & Trail Magazine
Russell D. Kane divides his time between Houston and Fredericksburg, Texas. A technical writer whose research spans three decades and who has garnered two awards for writing excellence, he has covered Texas wines and cuisine since 1998 and now blogs on the subject of Texas wine at VintageTexas.com.
Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and America's eighth Master of Wine, is one of only four people in the world to hold both distinctions. The host of Check Please, a weekly public television show in Kansas City, he also writes and lectures extensively about wine, beer, and spirits.