The best cookbooks do more than just present recipes -- they offer a glimpse into a particular place or style of cooking that can change the way we view the food on our plates. While running your last minute holiday errands be sure to swing through a bookstore to load up on house gifts and stocking stuffers.
At this time of year in the U.S., the sunlight suddenly seems less vibrant, summer fruits give way to root vegetables in farmers markets, and it feels as if the holidays and winter's chill are just around the corner. Don't you wish you could step into a time machine and head back to spring, with the first splash of green and the promise of summer? That's what we've done for the past few winters, while researching our book, "Wines of the Southern Hemisphere," and there really is something special about springtime in the Barossa.
Wine travel is always a voyage of discovery; as much as we like to plan our trips, we sometimes like to ditch the agenda and find out the secrets that a region has to offer. A recent trip to California's Sonoma County gave us everything we have come to expect from wine country: Beautiful vistas of rolling hills covered with grapevines, hand-crafted meals cooked with precision, and glass upon glass of exquisitely made wines.