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A Rollicking Wine Country Travelogue

Rick Kushman and Hank Beal are wine guys, but very different wine guys. Hank is a wine pro - the executive wine buyer for an upscale supermarket chain. Rick loves wine, but is more the happy wine idiot. Together, they visit 141 tasting rooms in Napa during one wine season, and the result is A Moveable Thirst, an engaging, funny book that's part Sideways, part Wine for Dummies and part Frommer's. The first half is their tale of the road. As Rick learns to taste, spit and find his way around a wine bottle, it becomes a cheerful journey and a low-key tutorial for anyone who wants to learn more about wine. The second part is the most thorough guide ever to Napa tasting rooms, as the guys detail those 141 rooms with tips on everything from service to atmosphere to views and picnic prospects.


Learn from Hank's patient expertise and Rick's often-naïve but relentlessly enthusiastic questions. Find out how to charm servers, learn about wine and encourage extra pours. (Hint: Never quote from Sideways. Ever. It's been done.) Get key wine-tasting tips, like "Carry a cooler; don't cook your wine" and "Hydrate; you'll feel better." Get real pointers on navigating the Valley. Simple but handy things like, "Turn right. Plan your trip for that. It sounds dumb, but left turns out of a winery's driveway on Highway 29 during busy times don't exist."

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