Drinks books did particularly well at the 2017 André Simon Food and Drink book awards, announced last night at the Goring hotel in London.
André Simon awards: Winning food and drink books from 2017
The ‘best drink book’ award winner was Peter Liem, for his book Champagne: The Essential Guide to Wines, Producers and Terroirs of The Iconic Region.
The judges praised it for being beautifully illustrated, and an authoritative account of a well-known, but often misunderstood, wine region and style.
‘This is a book that we’ll return to for many years,’ said wine expert Joe Fattorini, who led the judging for drinks books.
‘Not only as an authoritative catalogue or even a book that also explores perhaps the world’s most celebrated wine region, but as a book that asks questions about the nature of terroir and place.’
The prize for best food writing went to chef Stephen Harris, for his book The Sportsman, telling the story of his life and how he came to start the Michelin-starred Kent pub by the same name.
‘The kind of book you want to win a prize like this must capture a moment, say something about where we are, as well as being inspirational, well-written, useful and expert. The Sportsman does that,’ said food writer Rachel Cooke, who led judging for the food books at this year’s awards.
Drinks books dominated the other prizes on the evening.
The John Avery Award went to The Way of Whisky by Dave Broom, an in depth look at Japanese whisky and culture.
Victoria Moore’s The Wine Dine Dictionary was given the Special Commendation, helping readers either pick the wine to drink with what they are cooking, or what to cook for the wine they want to drink.
The André Simon Food and Drink book awards have been running since 1978, named after André Simon, the French-born, UK-dwelling wine merchant and food and wine writer, who died in 1970.