What's the difference between how wines are made in the North versus the Southern Rhone? What area of Italy grows Muscat grapes? What does "en tirage" mean? Now, wine lovers anywhere in the world can visit www.wine.com to access the most comprehensive and trusted reference source for wines, The Oxford Companion to Wine, edited by the highly respected UK wine columnist, author, and Master of Wine, Jancis Robinson.

Wine.com, the global online wine destination, announced today that it has licensed The Oxford Companion to Wine, Second Edition (1999) to be available in its entirety on its Web site. The addition of this comprehensive reference tool, regarded as the pre-eminent resource for "all things wine," will further solidify wine.com as the leading online source for wine and wine information. Wine.com visitors now will be able to look up wine information and expand their wine knowledge - as well as purchase wines from the leading wine merchant on the Web.

"The Oxford Companion to Wine is not only the trusted reference for wine sommeliers and experts, but it is also an excellent source of information and education for wine lovers at any knowledge level," said Peter Granoff, Master Sommelier and Senior Vice President at wine.com. "Pairing this outstanding educational tool with the remarkable selection of quality wines available for purchase on the site further positions wine.com as the premier wine destination on the Web."

Edited by Jancis Robinson, one of the world's leading authorities on wine, the Oxford Companion to Wine is used heavily by wine sommeliers and experts across the globe. Robinson was the first journalist to earn the prestigious Master of Wine title. Her books include Jancis Robinson's Wine Course and Tasting Pleasure: Confessions of a Wine Lover. In addition, Robinson is a regular columnist in the Financial Times and UK-based Decanter magazine.

"Wine.com is committed to providing the most comprehensive information about wine and wine-related activities anywhere on the Web," said Robert Jennings, Senior Vice President of Content and Programming. "The addition of the full content of The Oxford Companion to Wine will allow wine.com visitors to increase their knowledge about wine and make educated purchasing decisions."

The Oxford Companion to Wine includes more than 3,000 individual entries about wine regions, wine history, and wine varietals, as well as 31 maps highlighting every wine region in the world. Also included is a comprehensive guide to grape varieties, a vintage chart, and an overview of fine wines.

The more serious wine expert also will be able to visit wine.com to access The Oxford Companion to Wine's substantial information about vintners' terms, business and legal aspects of wine, wine writing and scoring, as well as detailed descriptions of most of the technical terms associated with wine making.

As part of a fully-integrated experience, visitors to wine.com will be able to cross-reference wines listed in The Oxford Companion to Wine to offerings available for purchase on the site.

About wine.com

Founded in 1994, wine.com was the first wine merchant on the Web and a pioneer in electronic commerce. The company's portal site, www.wine.com, offers an ever-growing selection of wines from around the world and wine-related gifts and accessories to customers worldwide. The company makes wine buying easy and fun with detailed wine information, its proprietary wine tasting chart and expert advice from its professional wine team, which includes two Master Sommeliers and a Master of Wine. Each wine offered on the site is tasted and selected by wine.com's experts and is 100% guaranteed. The "Featured Wineries" area of the site highlights exclusive wines from such leading wine brands as Niebaum-Coppola, Kendall-Jackson, Sterling Vineyards, and Domaine Chandon. Wine.com is able to ship wine through a legally compliant network of wholesalers and retailers to more than 90% of the United States, as well as Asia and Europe. Wine.com is privately held and headquartered in Napa with an office in Fremont, Calif.