As for the three previous editions, this Companion owes most to a host of people around the world who have been extraordinarily generous with their time and knowledge, perhaps because wine is a subject which naturally inspires generosity and enthusiasm.
Dr Richard Smart, viticulturist extraordinaire, went to exceptional lengths to ensure that all the entries on viticulture were brought fully up to date and was always on hand to answer queries. He is Australian and a veteran contributor to the Oxford Companion to Wine, complemented in previous editions by the late A. Dinsmoor Webb of California and Dr Patrick Williams of Australia as Oenology Editors. In this edition we were particularly keen to increase the influence of the Old World on our scientific entries, so capably marshalled by Julia Harding MW. We were delighted therefore when renowned oenologist Professor Denis Dubourdieu of Bordeaux University’s oenology department and his associate, the appropriately named Dr Valérie Lavigne, agreed to review the entries on winemaking. Nevertheless, when it came to final detailed updates to specific entries, it is remarkable how many specialists came to our aid from the Australian Wine Research Institute in Adelaide. We are hugely grateful to all those who shared their highly specialized knowledge with us.