Despite grappa's favored place today in even the most exclusive bars, its origins are humble. It was created primarily to avoid wasting the pomace -- ... Show synopsis Despite grappa's favored place today in even the most exclusive bars, its origins are humble. It was created primarily to avoid wasting the pomace -- the skins, pips, stems, and pulp left over from the winemaking process. The pomace was then distilled, creating a clear brandy often considered too fiery and inelegant for sophisticated palates. But as vintners began to craft world-class wines out of grapes and regions once thought unsophisticated, and as boutique bourbons and single-malt Scotches became trendy, grappa too was ready for a revival. A brief history of this distillate is followed by a discussion of what distinguishes it from other pomace brandies made in Italy and elsewhere. High-quality brands are now often handcrafted by a select few vintners and distillers, and the authors explain each step of making grappa, from the harvest to the aging, bottling, and production. The heart of this handsome volume consists of two A to Z guides: one of the vintners, who tend to be smaller producers; and the other of the distillers, most of whom produce in greater quantities. A brief overview of the history, methods, equipment, and grapes is supplied for each producer, and the tasting notes that follow are both informative and evocative. Grappa is a guide to finding pleasure in a drink whose essence has often been obscured by snobbery. With a well-conceived introduction and a thoughtful, straightforward catalog of producers, this book should prove an essential reference for newcomers and for connoisseurs.