What is the history of wine? Well it’s hard to think of a party or festive gathering without wine being part of the proceedings, so you might be curious about wine history. It is even known as the ‘elixir of happiness’ which is why people sometimes think it was born right when man was, but of course it wasn’t. So who came up with the idea of fermenting fruit in the first place?
It might interest you to know the history of wine goes back to ancient Egypt, and that was 2500 BC. Wine might even have been used before that. According to the evidence found, wine goes back to the ancient civilizations in Egypt.
It is probable that early man discovered what fermentation did to fruits, and especially grapes because they are high in sugar and therefore idea for fermenting. Excavations have uncovered ancient fermenting pools and even wineries, which makes it clear wine has been around for a long time.
Table of Contents
History of Wine: Early Uses of Wine
Today wine is known as a party beverage, something to enjoy at the end of a long working day, or something to crack open when friends visit – something to loosen the tongue, make things fun and interesting, and to relax the senses. We tend to sip it and forget about the history of wine and how it came into being.
In times gone by, wine was used symbolically when taking vows and during religious sacraments. It was used as a wound antiseptic and to cure the ‘frail’. Wine was popular in the Old World and it also spread throughout the Empires.
The cultivation of grapes spread to Australia and South America and today pretty much every country produces its own wine, or at least some form of alcohol by fermenting.
History of Wine: Different Types of Wine
Wine types have changed a lot through the history of wine. Table wines, sparkling wines and fortified wines make up much of the wine spectrum. Table wines are made by pressing grapes to get grape juice and then it is allowed to ferment, with or without sugar and/or yeast. Table wines range from dry to sweet depending on the fermentation style, also known as the vinification. An alcohol content between 7 and 15% is typical.
A fortified wine has extra alcohol added to bring the alcohol content up to between 14 and 23%. And how about sparkling wine? Well that was discovered in the 1700s by Dom Pierre Perignon, who was a monk. This type of wine develops carbon dioxide during fermentation.
The second fermentation happens within the bottle. Extra sugar and yeast is added to this type of wine to ensure plenty of carbon dioxide, and it builds up until the wine is uncorked, so you can be assured of that ‘pop’ when the cork comes out and the delicious fizz in the glass which you will get.
Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine 2015
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The Wine Bible
You will find glossaries, recommended bottles, tips and tricks, and some humorous content too.
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