Book Review

Cork Dork by Bianca Bosker [Book Review]

Cork Dork front

The short note on the UK & Ireland cover of Bianca Bosker’s book “Cork Dork” already gives you most of the information you need to know before starting to read the book:

A wine-fueled journey into the art of sommeliers and the science of taste

You don’t need a deep interest in wine to appreciate this book, but it does help – especially when you catch yourself agreeing ruefully with some of the seemingly outlandish observations contained within.  Bianca Bosker has us laughing at situations which are wine-related, but are more importantly reflections of the absurdities which we all see in everyday life.

In many ways, Cork Dork strikes me as a platonic three way love affair between the author, her mentor Morgan, and wine – with wine playing VERY hard to get.  There’s also a very interesting excursion into the origins of the flavour / aroma wheel and the way it totally changed the way wines are professionally reviewed and assessed – something I have been subconsciously rebelling against in my own reviews.

Personally speaking, there are two ideas mentioned in the book which really spoke to me:

Morgan has always blazed through his passions like a forest fire, consuming everything in his path.  “My brain has a tendency to want to organize small differentiating units into systems,” he told me.  “Part of it is my desire to know a thing in its entirety, or as close to it as you can.”

[First came trading cards, then video games, then rock bands.]  And now, wine.  At last, Morgan had found a topic with an infinite number of expansion packs.

I feel something of a kindred spirit to Morgan – I was interested in cars as a kid, which was eclipsed by music; that co-existed with wine for a while, but with a family of my own something had to lose out, and it was never going to be wine.  I’m a cork Dork too!

I was curious to know how they judged if someone had been moved – really, truly moved – by a bottle, while trying to remember how I’d acted when I tasted the wines they’d opened that evening.  How could they tell that someone had not really appreciated a wine?

“Because,” said Morgan, all hopped-up on Chablis, “it doesn’t look like they’ve been harpooned in the fucking chest when they fucking drank the fucking thing.”

Yes, wine is just a drink, but it can be SUCH a drink.  For those who have never had such a moment with wine, it could also be thought of as akin to Anton Ego’s ratatouille flashback in the film of the same name:

Anton Ego Flashback.gif

 

Click below to find this book on amazon.co.uk:

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