Greek & Roman
Greeks and Romans were the most important in European wine culture.
Around 1000 BC, wine was brought to Greece, by the god of wine in classical
The Greeks were the first to establish wine trading in Europe and the Mediterranean,
from east of the Black Sea to Spain. Most imports came from India, but
their favorite was from Italy, especially from Sicily. It is no wonder
that “Italy” in Greek is translated to “land of wine”.
Julius Caesar viewed that women and wine were the two essential components
of a successful military campaign. Everywhere their
army triumphed, vines are planted. But wines in France were not
brought by Romans. Greeks planted vines near Marseilles around
500 BC. Greeks were also the first to age their wines.
During the Medieval Period, the use of sulfur as sterilization in wine
was forbidden by law. Wine storage and wine aging virtually did not
exist during this time. Wine would be drank before it was turned
into vinegar, usually less than one year from when it’s made.
During the Middle Ages in Europe, wine in part compensated for the lack
of carbohydrates in the diet, as well as a vitamin supplement. Also in this
period of time, the monastic orders maintained the international trade
of wine, which was important in the development of different and unique types
In 17th century, a Benedictine monk, Dom Perignon made the discovery
of Champagne. It was known that some wines could undergo a second
fermentation once they’re fermented. But these wines could pop off
the lids of the bottles. They were called vin diable, or devil
wine. Perignon started the process of improving the quality of lids
and stronger bottles, making them stronger and preventing the lid from
popping. When he finally succeed in allowing a secondary fermentation
inside a bottle, he created the wine that is now known as “Champagne”.
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