A short history of wine

The history of wine stretches back thousands of years in the past. There is very little love, wars, defeats, and celebrations that are not spiced up with this divine drink. There are few poets and artists who didn’t devote to him at least one of their works.

Wine can freely be considered as the oldest product of humanity. According to some untested sources, the first traces of wine production date back to 6000 years BCE from the part of today’s Georgia. Viticulture is growing rapidly from these moments and occupying bigger and bigger territories, and so the wine becomes the most important drink of the kings of Mesopotamia and Egypt.

In Egypt, for the first time, wine labels with an inscription referring to geographical origin are mentioned. This information tells us that the ancient Egyptians also understood the role of the climate for further development and style of wine. After Egypt, the wine spreads first to ancient Greece, where for the first time it receives its God Dionysus, which gives us a picture of the significance which the ancient Greeks gave to the wine.

With the conquest of the Apennine peninsula, the Greeks transferred the wine culture to it, and they called the land itself Enotria. The great influence on the spread of wine culture in the world, especially on the conception of vineyards in France, was made by the ancient Romans who, in spite of the fantastic development of wine growing in Rome, presented wine to today well-known regions such as Burgundy, Bordeaux, Champagne, Loire, Rhône, Mozelle and Rhine . With its development, winemaking is gaining in importance in the higher strata of the population and becomes the drink of nobility.

Since 400 BCE, the main role in the development of the wine industry has been taken over by the church and monasteries, which have been taking care of both vineyards and winemaking since then. Wine thus acquires a religious significance and is increasingly used in religious rituals. The only region that was not under the influence of the church at that time was Bordeaux, who from the middle of the twelfth century dealt with the commercial side of the wine industry and supplied the thirsty British kingdom with the cliffs of Claret, as the British called red wine from Bordeaux.

The greatest development of wine is experienced in the 16th and 17th centuries when there are some milestones in the production and preservation of wine. Thus, the great invention of Kenelm Digby from 1622, which gave the glass bottle to the world, has largely changed the course of wine history. By that time the wine was mostly kept in different wine accessories:  casks, jugs, leather and various similar vessels that couldn’t preserve wine in the long run.

Finding a bottle as well as introducing the sulfurization of vessels into winemaking in 1700 changed this picture and the wine begins to live longer. During his maturation, change his properties and receive the so-called bouquet. Another great invention of this time determines the course and direction of winemaking and trends in wine. Benedictine priest, Dom Perignon at the beginning of the 18th century, witnessed the creation of magic and bubbles in the bottle and thus made a whole new chapter in the history of winemaking, and set Champagne to the very top of world wines.

Learn more at Wineandbarrels.