Michael J Gelb, the author of this book is a highly discerning creativity consultant for top companies on the world. Creativity is his bread and he analyses, investigates and unveils the old truths about the source of creative mind.
Gelb’s extensive research, wealth of experience and family harnessed passion for wine all boil in a kettle of stirring insights into la dolce vita – the art of life – of various cultures inspired by wine.
Michael J Gelb book
One of his most striking arguments is that our society suffers from ‘Dionysian malnutrition’, term originated by a Jungian analyst Robert A. Johnson.
Dionysus was the god of wine, agriculture, and fertility of nature in the ancient Greece. Going further; according the Encyclopeadia Mythica; the Eleusis religious practice assigned his powers over ecstasy, personal delivery from the daily world through physical or spiritual intoxication, and initiation into secret rites.
Do we really suffer from undernourishment as we don’t drink enough wine, forget about pleasure in our life, are less fertile and stray away from our nature?
In part yes, drinking wine isn’t as socially acceptable today as it was in the times of Socrates and Aristotle, we are stressed by endless working commitments and pressures of life so our pleasures often play the second violin, we want less kids than our ancestors and eat tons of processed and genetically modified food.
But, this is my point, not Gelb’s. He looks at our brain and observes how wine can help to develop three facets of intelligence:
1) Sensory
2) Creative
3) Social


Multi-sensory awareness is crucial in appreciating wine. Michael J Gelb writes:
‘The merging of cross-referencing of the senses = synestesia is important for artists, connoisseurs and scientists.’


Right brain is often neglected when using analytical thinking (right brain).
“The appropriate amount of wine in the right setting serves to gently inhibit left-brain functioning and to liberate the more imaginative right brain. We can take advantage of this to explore and enjoy the more poetic aspects of our being.”


Tipsy people are bonding better or perhaps he points out that wine is often shared as a bottle is too big for one person therefore it is a very social endeavour.
“Creativity, joy, wine, and poetry are all more fun when they are shared. As we share these elements, we can enhance our interpersonal intelligence, deepen our social bonds, and strengthen espirit de corps.”
He also comments on the wine snobbism as he writes; ‘Many people take the tastings much too seriously’ and this robs them of joy and degrades the creative power of wine.
Experimenting with wine freely will ‘encourage people to think outside the box’, use their right – creative brain more and perhaps bring more satisfaction from drinking the liquid of ancient gods. And there are no boundaries, we all can be creative, Gelb adds; ‘After a second glass of wine, everyone is a poet.’
What are the methods of involving the creative brain more? Well, while sipping your wine think like this:

  • What music does it bring t mind? (Jazz, Rock, Soul, Country, Classical, Opera)
  • If this wine were a painting who would be the artist? (A cave painter, Rothko, Raphael, Monet, da Vinci)

There are many more ‘creative’ tips in his book assuring lots of fun with your glass filled with wine.

Characteristics of a Fine Wine and a Fine Mind:
Cultivated, balanced, complex, intense, focused, subtle, deep, original, and it improves with age.

A tiny book filled with wisdom, quotes from famous people, truths about penchant for wine of many world leaders and dignitaries, amusing stories and poems from Gelb’s wine-inspired clients. It is an art to fit so much of great thought into such a small user-friendly book.
To conclude, I cannot more than fully agree with Michael J Gelb as he writes: ‘If you want to be well-informed you read, watch, and listen to diverse resources. So it is with wine … If you can, read them all [critics], drink, and decide for yourself.’
Again – think out of the box for yourself!
You can get this book by Michael J Gelb on Amazon from $13.57.