The World Atlas of Wine

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The World Atlas of Wine
The World Atlas of Wine, 7th Edition cover.jpg
Seventh edition cover
Author Hugh Johnson
Jancis Robinson
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Genre Wine atlas
Publisher Mitchell Beazley
Publication date
October 2013 (seventh edition)
Media type Print (hardcover), ebook (iBooks Author)
Pages 400
ISBN 978-1-84533-689-9
OCLC 213401236

The World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson and (since 2003) Jancis Robinson, MW, is an atlas and reference work on the world of wine, published by Mitchell Beazley. It pioneered the use of wine-specific cartography to give wine a sense of place, and has since the first edition published in 1971 sold 4 million copies in 14 languages.[1] Considered among the most significant wine publications to date,[2] and it remains one of the most popular books on wine, with the most recent seventh edition published in October 2013.[3]


Prior to its publication in 1971, no work of wine literature contained high quality, wine-specific cartography. Some single-subject wine literature contained simple line-drawn maps, but not detailed, colour cartography with precise boundaries, and no book attempting to cover the world of wine had maps for every country. It was therefore not possible to open a bottle, open a book, and see precisely where the wine came from. This sense of place for wine is taken for granted today, but in 1971 it was revolutionary, and Johnson’s timing was impeccable.

Until the World War II, wine was the preserve of the upper classes in western Europe, and virtually non-existent in the U.S. due to Prohibition, but servicemen returning home from the European theatre brought with them the newly acquired habit of wine drinking. With the emergence of mass tourism in the 1950s and the greater spending power of the 1960s, a whole new generation visited France, Italy and Spain, bringing back the continental culture of wine.

America's taste for wine also began to develop in the early 1960s. The majority of these new wine drinkers were young, well-traveled, and relatively affluent and, as the Baby Boom generation came of age, so the ranks of wine drinkers increased. Never before, and never since, have there been so many new wine consumers without any knowledge of the wines they were encountering, and in 1971 The World Atlas of Wine was uniquely placed to satisfy that demand. With mass tourism on the increase throughout the 1970s, the demand for The World Atlas of Wine continued to grow, as there was no real competition until 1988, when The Sotheby's World Wine Encyclopedia (now The Sotheby's Wine Encyclopedia) was published.

The Institut National des Appellations d'Origine, a French governmental organisation that avoids comment on commercial ventures, was moved to describe The World Atlas of Wine upon publication as "a major landmark in the literature of wine".[2][4][5]

The distinctive maps for the First Edition of the Atlas were drawn by Fairey Surveys Ltd Cartographic office in Maidenhead, UK. Although many maps have been added in later editions many of the original maps of the classic wine areas are still used in the current edition.

iPad Edition[edit]

The seventh edition was simultaneously released as hardcover print book and ebook for the iPad using Apple's iBooks Author format (referred to as 'Made for iBooks' in iBooks). In December 2013 it was announced that the ebook was a finalist for a Digital Book Award.[6] The ebook was also featured in the Best of 2013 promotion in iBooks.


  • First edition was printed in 1971[7]
  • Second in 1977[8]
  • Third in 1985 [9]
  • Fourth in 1994 [10]
  • Fifth in 2001 [11]
  • Sixth in 2007[12]
  • Seventh in 2013[13]


  1. ^ Robinson, Jancis, "Books". 
  2. ^ a b "Wine Book Review - The World Atlas of Wine - Hugh Johnson, Jancis Robinson". Retrieved 24 June 2010. 
  3. ^ Rosen, Maggie, (October 5, 2007). "Hugh Johnson, Jancis Robinson release new 'World Atlas of Wine'". 
  4. ^ IntoWine: The World Atlas of Wine
  5. ^ Robinson, Jancis, "Who on earth are we?". Archived from the original on February 14, 2008. 
  6. ^ Digital Book World website (Jan 2014)
  7. ^ Johnson, Hugh (1971). World Atlas of wine. Simon & Schuster. ISBN 0-671-21109-9. 
  8. ^ Johnson, Hugh (1977). World Atlas of wine (2nd ed.). London : Mitchell Beazley. p. 288. ISBN 0-85533-002-3. 
  9. ^ Johnson, Hugh (1985 (1988 printing)). The world atlas of wine : a complete guide to the wines and spirits of the world (3rd ed., completely rev. and extended. ed.). London : Mitchell Beazley. p. 320. ISBN 0-85533-562-9.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  10. ^ Johnson, Hugh (1994). World Atlas of wine (4th ed., completely rev. ed.). London : Mitchell Beazley. p. 320. ISBN 1-85732-268-1. 
  11. ^ Johnson, Hugh (2001). World Atlas of wine (5th ed.). London : Mitchell Beazley. p. 352. ISBN 1-84000-332-4. 
  12. ^ Hugh Johnson, Jancis Robinson (2007). World Atlas of wine (6th ed.). London : Mitchell Beazley. p. 400. ISBN 978-1-84533-301-0. 
  13. ^ Hugh Johnson, Jancis Robinson (2013). World Atlas of wine (7h ed.). London : Mitchell Beazley. p. 400. ISBN 978-1-84533-689-9.