How and Where Wine Came to Be

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For many people, the mere mention of wine conjures images of the extensive vineyards of Italy and France. Though these countries are heavily invested in wine production today, historians don’t think wine production originated there.

The first indication of wine production was found in the small Russian nation called Georgia, positioned near the Black Sea.

Proof of wine production (cultivated grape pips dating back 8000 years) was discovered here, so some experts assert that Georgia is the birthplace of wine.

Whether that’s true or not, wine and wine-making has been a vital part of world civilizations for millenia.

Once wine production began, the demand and methods spread rapidly around the world.. Evidence of wine production in Egypt, Armenia, and Iran can also be found from countless years back.

(Ancient Egyptians even had monthly “Day of Intoxication” religious celebrations to honor the god of wine, Hathor.)

Nevertheless, wine did not become popular with the masses until the time of the Romans. The size of the Roman empire itself accelerated the spread of wine throughout Europe and beyond. (Raise a glass to the Romans – cheers!)

As the years went by, the wine market grew, evolved and was influenced by cultural and social conditions in various parts of the world.

For example, throughout medieval times, the church supported wine production because it was used in religious ceremonies.

Monasteries also created wine for their own use, and as a method to make extra income, through the middle Ages. Vineyards thrived.

On the other hand, Islamic states that became part of the Ottoman Empire tried to ban wine.

That failed, because the Qur’ an taught that Christians and Jews should be secured under Islamic rule. Officials weren’t allowed to harm the vineyards, because of their tie to religious events.).

In between the 1300s and 1400s, many of the areas we associate today with wine production began to thrive. These include the Bordeaux, Burgundy, and Champagne regions of France.

In addition, Riesling, a popular German wine, first entered production during the 1400s.

In the centuries that followed, Europe became the center point of everything related to wine. Almost all of the expensive wines were produced there, and most of the well-to-do wine drinkers lived there.

It was not until the 20th century that wine production started in other areas of the world.

During the 20th century, the rise of the United States in the wine market is deemed to be one of the most significant changes to ever take place to anything associated with wine.

Wine-making in the United States began before that time, naturally – one of the first things that Pilgrims did when landing in Massachusetts was to start growing grapes.

German churches in the Midwest also ended up being known for growing wine.

Nevertheless, for many years, wine grown in the United States was looked down on by the European countries.

This began to change in 1976, when American wine makers amazed the wine-drinking world by an extraordinary proving at the premiere event for wine lovers , the Paris Wine Tasting.

After this unexpected showing, more recognition quickly followed, and before too long any wine that originated from California was instantly reputable and frequently favored.

Recently, South American countries Chile and Argentina in particular have also developed track records and followings for their wines, world-wide.

Today, you can find bottles of wine almost anywhere you go and any place on the planet you may be.

What was once a small localized market has grown into both a worldwide boom and a way of living for many many people around the world.

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