This is a must-read book if you have any interest in the current state of wine, both in the US and around the world. Elin McCoy's The Emperor of Wine: The Rise of Robert M. Parker, Jr. and the Reign of American Taste (New York, NY: HarperCollins, 2005) is a fascinating look at the man who transformed wine reviewing, scoring, and had a huge impact on how winemakers the world over approached oenology once he became well-known. Woven through the story of his rise to the top of the wine world are fascinating bits of history, tracing winemaking method from traditional methods to current technology. Globalization and a desire to please Parker made some vintners turn their back on terroir, but a counter-revolution since the early 2000's has made the taste and variety of wine ever-expanding. Wine is made in all 50 states, though you wouldn't know it from either Robert Parker or the Wine Spectator, another power in the wine world.
What's the most unusual wine you've tried? Any from a state or region you wouldn't expect to have wine?