A Journey to The Wine Paradise
The wine has been favorite humankind beverage for thousands of years. The natural fondness for wine comes from its nutritious qualities, intoxicating effects, and wonderful taste. Here is how wine began its journey and became one of the most favorite drinks of the world
The Oldest Winery
The earliest winery is known to be Areni-1 winery Armenia, which is 6,100 years old.
Wine and Ancient Egypt
In Egypt, the era of pharaohs rose to power in 3100 B.C., Egyptians began making a substance like wine from red grapes, it resembled blood and was used in ceremonies. Egyptians came into contact with the Phoenicians and Jews.
Wine in Northern-Israel
Recently, archaeologists discovered a cellar in northern-Israel that is 3,700 years old, 1700 B.C. The scientists who were studying the findings stated that over 500 gallons of wine used to be stored in the cellar, this is equivalent to 3,000 bottles.
The Phoenicians Spread the Wine
From 1200 B.C. to 539 B.C. the Phoenicians had begun trading across the countries around the Mediterranean Sea including Middle East (which is now known as Israel). The Phoenicians stretched around the sea starting from North Africa to points in Italy and Greece. While trading, the Phoenicians carried wine in ceramic jugs and grapevines. The Jews who were using wine for marking religious ceremonies came into contact with the Phoenicians. Wine is first mentioned in the Bible in the book of Genesis when the flood was over, Noah drunk wine and exposed himself to his sons.
The Rise of Greece
In 800 B.C., the Phoenicians had introduced the Greeks to wine. The Greeks began perfecting the drink. Wine became a symbol for health, religion, and trade. Dionysus is a Greek god who was given the name in honor of wine. While traveling with wine, the Greek city-state began rising power and colonized the land around Mediterranean. After conquering new colonies, the Greeks settled the area and brought grapevines to the new colonies. Southern Italy and Sicily formed the earliest colonies. After that, wine traveled toward Rome.
Rome Conquers Greece
The Romans became owners of wine and created Bacchus who was the god of wine. Wine became the central part of Rome’s culture, the same way the Greeks did. Romans build upon and also formalize the cultivation methods of the Greeks until terroir is famous and recognized vintages. Roman planted grapevines in Spain, Portugal, Italy, Germany, modern day France, and several nations of Central European. Catholic Church started focusing on wine production and cultivation. The Catholic Church grew across and introduced wine to the European nations.
Wine Travels to The New World
The wine was introduced to Brazil and Mexico by the conquistadors. From Brazil and Mexico, it spread across South America.
The Arrival of Portuguese Jesuits In Japan
The Portuguese sailed to Japan, and six years later, Saint Xavier gave a gift (wine) for the feudal lords. Jesuits converted more than 100,000 Japanese to Catholicism, and imported European wine was introduced to the Japanese citizens. Toyotomi Hideyoshi reunifies Japan, in 1587 and Christianity was burned. During the Meiji restoration, which was 300 years later Grapevines were planted, as the country embraced Western culture.
Spanish Missionaries Spread through America
In 1554, the Spanish missionaries, who were traveling from the points North, Mexico included, established the first winery in Chile.
Spanish Missionaries Travel to Argentina from Chile
In 1556, the missionaries from Spain traveled to Chile from Argentina, and settled in Mendoza wine region, and planted the first grapes in the region
Wine Comes to Florida in the U.S.
Between 1562 to 1564 wine came to the United States, and was made by the French Huguenots in the biggest city in the U.S. state of Florida. The Huguenots were using native grapes that were found growing in the area. The wine didn’t please the Huguenots. As a result, the production was stopped.
Samuel De Champlain Establishment
Norseman Leif Eirikson is said to have planted grapes that were wildly growing in 1001 AD; the settlement did not last. In 1534, the French claimed Canada, but established a permanent settlement in 1608, the time Samuel de Champlain had founded Quebec City. Jesuits followed and attempted growing European grapes with little success. Jesuits turned to the local grapes.
Grapevines are Cultivated in Virginia
In 1619, the French imported grapevines and started cultivating wine Virginia, U.S. Wine began to be made up and also down the Eastern Seaboard. But because of Puritanical roots of the colony, it didn’t take off immediately. Wine starts to be made up and down the Eastern Seaboard, but, due to the colony’s Puritanical roots, it does not immediately take off.
Spanish Missionary Travels to California
Junípero Serra, a missionary from Spain, traveled to California after coming from Mexico City and opened a mission in San Diego. Serra brought carried grapes for creating first wine in the region. After that, the Spanish mission started spreading across California. The Franciscan monks brought the art of wine making and established the first winery in Sonoma, in 1805.
The Minister to France
In 1785, Thomas Jefferson was appointed as the France minister. He went to France and loved the French wine. He returned to the U.S with grape cuttings to see wine thriving in Virginia.
The California Gold Rush
Between 1848 to 1855, Americans travel to the west with a taste of wine and desire for riches. The taste for wine increases the demand of the wine made in California. The gold rushers brought vines from East coast, from France and, Zinfandel, which originated from Croatia.
China Opens Up Its Economy
1980 to date, as the economy of China, opened to the rest of the world under Deng Xiaoping, the imports of French wine started arriving, the French followed and started working together with local partners in planting vine yards. In three decades, the upper and middle class of China population has ballooned, the country has grown to be one of the largest producers and consumers of wine worldwide.
That’s how wine has taken over the world, and it’s not planning on stopping.