New Oxford Companion online now


We are delighted to report that the latest, fourth edition of The Oxford Companion to Wine, published in print last September, is now available online for members of It has taken our developers many weeks of grappling with its enormous volume of data – almost a million words – to make this happen, and, as with all things web-based, it will be improved and refined over the coming months.

Members can access the OCW4 here and via the menu bar link at the top of every page. The layout and navigation remain the same as for the third edition. As a reminder, here is what you'll find:

  • almost 4,000 A to Z entries on an unrivalled range of topics: the science and history of wine; the places, grape varieties and people who make it; how it is consumed, packaged and described; and much more besides
  • more than 60% of entries have been comprehensively revised and updated to include the latest international research and opinion, including particularly significant updates on topics such as Italy, China, geology, closures, sulfur dioxide, soil and wine quality, vine diseases and the origins of viniculture
  • 300 brand-new entries, including wine apps, authentication, CellarTracker, concrete, counterfeit wine, wine funds, Hong Kong, microbial terroir, minerality, natural wine, optical sorting, orange wine, oxygen transmission rate (OTR), premature oxidation, smoke taint, social media, Syrah decline, urban wineries, vandalism and Vin de France
  • 187 top experts, including more than 50 new ones, contribute entries on their specialist subjects or regions, such as Huon Hooke on Australia, Michael Fridjhon on South Africa, David Schildknecht on Germany and Austria, Victor de la Serna on Spain, Walter Speller on Italy, Richard Smart on viticulture and Alex Maltman on geology
  • all maps of wine regions have been updated for this edition.

We are aware of several issues that need to be resolved and these are on our fix list. Most of these are cosmetic problems which shouldn't compromise usability. Even so, they are annoying gremlins and we intend to address them as soon as possible. These are the ones we are aware of:

  • capitalisation of some headwords is incorrect
  • some entries are missing the very last word of the text
  • bold formatting is missing from some entries
  • large block quotations are incorrectly formatted
  • some tables are missing
  • contributor references are duplicated, and some contributor links are broken
  • some sections of text are incorrectly formatted when the text toggler is set to large.

If you notice anything that is not on this list, please let us know via the contact form. Once all such problems are solved, we intend to introduce additional features such as an audio pronunciation guide, a browsable contributor list and the exceptionally detailed appendices on which Tam worked so hard. They include lists of approved grape varieties for each European appellation as well as statistics on wine production and consumption by country.