About The Author


Steve Ettlinger has been an author, editor, and book producer since 1985, and has helped create over forty books. He has written eight books, all but two in the popular reference area.  Ettlinger’s books, listed below, explain complex and daunting but common things like wine, artificial food ingredients, ethnic cuisines, beer, and DIY hardware. Ettlinger is a successful lecturer and a veteran of dozens of TV, radio, web, and print interviews.

A selection of just some of those titles accounts for over a million copies sold; the bestselling series Wine for Dummies has surpassed one million in all its iterations.   His seventh book is Twinkie, Deconstructed, which describes where artificial food ingredients come from and how they are made. His most recent book, Ingredients:  A Visual Exploration, incorporates some of that material along with extraordinary photos of additives.

Ettlinger has contributed to various web sites, was an occasional contributor to the Huffington Post (see all posts by clicking here) and The Daily Beast, and has written Op-Ed pieces for the Los Angeles Times and the New York Sun.  He is an experienced lecturer at colleges and other venues ranging from Google headquarters to professional conventions.  Ettlinger is a former president of the American Book Producers Association (ABPA). He was named 2012 Tech Mentor-in-Residence at Pace University’s Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems.

Ettlinger has appeared on The Today Show (three times), CBS This Morning, ABC Nightline, Good Morning America, Fox News, Montel, Live with Regis and Kathie Lee, The Food Network (many times), and dozens of other national, syndicated, and local television and radio shows. (Recent appearances for Twinkie, Deconstructed, including an ABC Nightline feature, can be seen here).

Steve Ettlinger is happy to speak at schools of all levels, from middle school to grad school, as well as to address professional organizations.  He is a regular at Pratt Institute and NYU Steinhardt graduate schools. Please contact him directly regarding any speaking engagement or television opportunity.  Arrangements for some activities will be handled through his appropriate representative.

Prior to becoming a book producer and writer, Ettlinger was Associate Picture Editor at GEO Magazine, and worked on two of the Day In The Life projects.  During this time he taught at The New School, The School of Visual Arts, and Fordham University’s Graduate Program in Public Communication.  Ettlinger lived in Paris for six years, where he was Assistant Bureau Chief for Magnum Photos and also managed to eat at many of the world’s finest restaurants.  He has previously worked as an assistant chef, and enjoys old home renovation, cooking, sailing, and African drumming. A graduate of Tufts University, he lives in New York City.

Ettlinger has added large-scale wood sculpture – logs cut mainly with a chain saw – to his roster of activities. Click on the link here to see some pictures of his work.

Partial Book List


INGREDIENTS: A Visual Exploration of 75 Additives and 25 Food Products, photos by Dwight Eschliman, text by Steve Ettlinger.  ReganArts, 2015. IACP Cookbook Judges’ Choice Award.

Twinkie, Deconstructed, by Steve Ettlinger. Hudson Street Press (Penguin, hardcover), 2007; Plume (paperback), 2008.  Available in all formats.  Contact HSP for book rights information at 212-366-2245.  Television rights available (contact Ettlinger). (twinkiedeconstructed.com is part of this site.)

The  Complete Illustrated Guide to Everything Sold in Hardware Stores, by Steve Ettlinger.  Now available as an e-Book.  Originally published by Macmillan Publishing Company, 1988 (hardcover), 1993 (trade paperback), 1998 (revised  trade paperback).  Literary Guild. Corporate editions. Reprinted as The Hardware Cylcopedia by Running Press, 2003.  Published as a bindup with The Complete Illustrated Guide to Everything Sold in Garden Centers by Courage, 2002.  Excerpts published as The Pocket Guide to Nuts and Bolts by Running Press, 2006. Revised and published with color photography as The All New Illustrated Guide to Everything Sold in Hardware Stores (Cool Springs Press, June, 2017). “Like the Rosetta Stone...read a chapter a day for a week, then visit the hardware store on Saturday with confidence.” -- The New York Times.  In print since 1988!

The Kitchenware Book, by Steve Ettlinger. Irena Chalmers, Research  Consultant. Macmillan Publishing Company, 1992. Julia Child/IACP Cookbook Award nominee.  Reprinted by Barnes & Noble Books, 2001.

Beer  for Dummies, by Marty Nachel with Steve Ettlinger. IDG Books Worldwide, 1996; 2nd Edition 2012. Various foreign rights sold (Norwegian, Indian, and even German).

The Complete, Illustrated Guide to Everything Sold in Marine Supply Stores, by Steve Ettlinger. Hearst Marine Books, 1995.

The Restaurant Lover's  Companion, by Steve Ettlinger with Melanie Falick.  Addison-Wesley, 1994. Quality Paperback Book Club.

The Complete Illustrated Guide to Everything Sold in Garden Centers (Except  the Plants), by Steve Ettlinger, research by Robert Coleman, Brooklyn Botanic  Garden. Macmillan Publishing Company, 1990. Book of the Month, Rodale, and Garden Book Clubs.


Popular reference books

Beer Across America: A Regional Guide to Brewpubs and Microbreweries,  by Marty Nachel. Storey Communications, 1996. Corporate sales. Limited, non-exclusive  World Wide Web rights sold.

Wine  for Dummies, by Mary Ewing Mulligan MW and Ed McCarthy. IDG Books  Worldwide, 1995. French (!), Spanish, Portuguese, Korean and many other foreign rights sold; Doubleday Book Clubs. James Beard Award nominee. Revised periodically; 5th edition, 2012.  Over ONE MILLION of this and related titles sold as of 2012.  Over a dozen versions of this book appear in compendiums and specialized formats such as an iPhone app.

Wine Style, by Mary Ewing Mulligan MW and Ed McCarthy.  Wiley, 2005.*

Champagne for Dummies, by Ed McCarthy. IDG Books, 1999.*

French Wine for Dummies and Italian Wine for Dummies, by Mary Ewing Mulligan MW and Ed McCarthy. IDG Books, 2001.*

Wine Buying Companion for Dummies, by Mary Ewing Mulligan MW and Ed  McCarthy. IDG Books, 1997.*

Little Dummies Book of Red Wine, Little Dummies Book of White Wine, by Mary Ewing Mulligan MW and Ed McCarthy. IDG Books, Worldwide, 1996.*

Don't Pick Up the Baby or You'll Spoil the Child & Other Old Wives Tales  About Pregnancy and Parenting, by Colleen D. Gardephe and Steve Ettlinger.  Chronicle Books, 1993. Reprinted by Barnes & Noble Books as 100 Pieces of Folk Wisdom for Pregnancy and Parenting, 2001.

Fun books

The  Microsloth Joke Book, The  Great Macintosh Easter Egg Hunt, and Tales  from the Tech Support Line (humor), by David Pogue. Berkley Pub., 1997-8.*

The  Nitpicker's Guide for X-Philes, by Phil Farrand. Dell, 1997.

The  Nitpicker's Guide for Deep Space Nine Trekkers, by Phil Farrand.  Dell, 1996.

The  Nitpicker's Guide for Classic Trekkers, by Phil Farrand.  Dell, 1994. British, German, and audio rights sold.

The  Nitpicker's Guide for Next Generation Trekkers (Vol. One), by Phil Farrand, Dell, 1993, and ...Volume  Two, Dell, 1995. British, German, and audio rights sold.

Hard  Drive, by David Pogue (mass market novel)

Berkley Pub. Co., Diamond Imprint, 1993-5. Japanese and Korean rights sold. Film and computer game rights optioned. Reprinted  under Ace Imprint, 1995, 1996. New York Times Notable book of the Year.

Photo books

Vietnam: The Land We Never Knew, by Geoffrey Clifford (photography).  Chronicle Books, 1989. Communication Arts Award of Excellence for Design.

A Time That Was: Irish Moments, by Jill Freedman (photography)

Friendly Press, 1987.*

(Note:  Ettlinger acted as agent for many of the authors of the books he produced, and only those books that relate directly to the original produced book are listed here. Books for which he was agent only are starred.)

  1. *- Agent only

© Jill Enfield

Contact author

Steve Ettlinger


39 Saint Marks Avenue

Brooklyln, NY 11217