Revisit: Cork Vs Screw Top Conclusion

As we left off last time, many people have begun to switch from corking their wines, to putting a screw top on their bottles. As we discussed before, there are some benefits to both sides. Firstly corks have been in use for hundreds of years, removing a cork from a bottle does produce “music to my ears”, and not to mention that corks are very commonly collected. As far as screw tops go, they can be stored upright (wine enclosed with cork must be stored on its side), they are very easy to open, and also very easy to reclose.

The ongoing argument for corks is that they are the classic way to seal up a bottle of wine, the cork has even become iconic even for wine drinkers. I know that when I am choosing a bottle of wine, my company does greatly affect which bottle I will choose. That is to say that if I’m going to visit some people who I think are a little more snoody, I NEVER like to bring a screw top over, wouldn’t want them to think I’m cheap. Maybe if we broke down the cork tree a little more we could begin to understand why it has been so successful since the 17th century.  Cork trees live to be about 250 years old, and in that time their bark can be harvested anywhere from twenty-five to thirty two times. The reason that cork works so well is the protective chemical called suberin, which is a waxy substance that makes the Cork Oak resistant to rot, fire, and it causes the bark to be impermeable to both liquid and gasses. Another thing about the production of cork is that it actually is a fairly eco-friendly trade also. Since the trees live so long, and the growers do what they can to preserve them, it ends up being pretty green.

Screw tops are no joke in the wine world now. Many vintners have begun turning to this relatively new method, and more than ever it really is taking off. There are several reason the obvious ones that were previously stated such as ease of opening and storage, but beyond that there are even more reasons the person making the wine would want to switch out his corks for the everyday cap. The primary reason being consistency. Perhaps the largest trouble winemakers have with corks, is that they can offer incredibly different results from one cork to another. Many studies have indicated that one cork sample can be 100 times more/less porous than any other given sample. This really does make it tricky for vintners as they have no idea which cork they are potentially sticking in their bottle, and if they are wrong they just might have some spoilage.

Corks can spoil wine not only by being too porous, but by bringing some type of pollutant into the wine. Pollutants can come in many forms first and foremost cork itself, has a flavor and a smell, if you stop your wine with a cork then it will end up effecting the aroma and the taste. Then there are the other things you have to worry about. There has been a buzz going around that screw tops are the new way to do it, here is an article that says why a lot of people have been switching to screw tops as the preferable method. It says its cheaper and more effective for the winery to bottle the wine and how people actually find the screw top easier to open and easier to store. But what about the art of wine? It seems as though people are trading tradition for convenience. There is also much talk of how some of the treatments done to the natural stoppers has caused them to become infected by Trichloroanisole , or TCA. This chemical compound has been known to cause many wines to spoil. It is at large mostly in the corks of the spoiled wine; there are other chemical compounds like this one but TCA is the most commonly found culprit.

Some people even use corks as an art form. I found several pages in which people use corks to makes all kinds of crafts. Here I found a link where the person talks about making trivets at home by using old corks and a hot glue gun. The instructor says the most important part of the process is drinking wine that has corks so that you can build you collection. If people cease to use corks, these art forms will die. people such as this artist will never be able to create their works shortly after the demand for cork dies.

If vintners do ever cease corking their wines, I will be very upset. If you make 500 cases of wine, and you end up having to replace 15 or even 50 bottles of wine due to a bad cork, so what? If everyone switches over to screw tops (won’t ever happen), then the art of removing the cork is gone. Trust me I’ve dealt with my fair share of crumbly and stubborn corks, but at the end of the day I love the cork. Don’t get me wrong I don’t walk past a good bottle of wine because of the way it is capped, but I do prefer the traditional method. Which means putting a cork in it!

Revisit: Red Vs White: Which Side are You On?

Now that we know a little more about the origins of wine, we can start to become a bit more technical. It’s no secret that there are a plethora of different types of grape varietals out there, and that most of them fit into the two major wine categories. There’s red wine, and then there’s white. The main difference in the vintage process in the fact that White grapes have their skins and seeds removed before the grapes are crushed whereas the red wines use whole grapes; skins, seeds, and all. On a chemical level red and white wine are very similar. There is one major difference however, the red wines are left with more chemicals from the skin, acids, tannins, and it gives the wine a different texture and more complex flavor.

As far as taste is concerned, the wines couldn’t be more different.  This difference is due to the fact that the tannin from the red grape skins causes many chemical differences. While both are high in acid content, the red wines do preserve much better because of the chemical characteristics of tannins. Most White wine is considered to be sweet, fruity, and light. The red wines can also have a lot of fruit flavors in them, but they have a tendency to have a “drier” taste than that of their sweet and light counter-part. Also, with the higher acid and tannin count, the red wines have a tendency to have a more dramatic aroma and effect on the palate, due to being richer. Here is a chart that helps describe major red and white varieties quite well. Many people will be able to tell you which they prefer, but if you plan to drink wine for enjoyment, then listen to the voice in your head. That guy in my head always knows what I like best!                                                                     

 If you are trying to make the healthy choice, that’s where things really get interesting. In terms of calories and sugar, red wine on average is higher in both, but by this chart you can see its almost not worth mentioning. The big difference is a component of wine found in the skin of the grapes, it called reservatrol. This chemical has been known to reduce bad cholesterol, increase good cholesterol, protect red blood cells, prevent heart disease, and even prevent cancer. With that being said, this doesn’t mean you should go out and drink a bottle of red wine every day, according to this article by the Mayo Clinic. Rather, the healthy level of moderation is one glass(5oz)  of red wine per day for women, and two glasses per day for men.. If you want to get this supplement, you must drink red wine, as this chemical is only found in the skin of the grapes, and only red wine has the skins on as before mentioned.

As to what other people are saying, it is really hard to say which is better. As I was reading one blog on wordpress, I read that the author had found many studies that were very similar to those that I have found, suggesting that both types of wine in moderation can be healthy, but at the same time both in abuse can be hurtful. This author suggests it is more of a personal preference. It should be true that you should drink what you truly enjoy but doesn’t its health effects weigh into you decision also?

On a personal level, I do like red wine better. I feel that they are much more exciting to drink. I love the complexities that the acids and tannins bring forward, and also the aromas flavors of red wine are so much more intense! Red wines also age better because of the chemicals they have in them. Not only that but who could turn down something so delicious with all those alleged health benefits right? Either grape you choose can ultimately keep you away from heart disease and artery failure in the future. Abuse of either can lead to serious problems. If you want the chemical reservatrol, then you’re going to have to drink red.

 

A revisit: The Roots of Vinticulture

Today wine is consumed by millions of people all over the world. Almost everyone knows how the process works, you simply smash some grapes and preserve their juices, and with time you have wine, in a nut shell. There is no detailed records that clearly indicate the actual origin of where wine was first discovered; but there is a legend that a woman in Persia, more specifically a harem of a king holds the credit.  The tale is that she was banished by the King and became very depressed and even suicidal. She allegedly tried to commit suicide by drinking the juice of grapes that had long spoiled in a clay pot. Instead of reaching her demise the tale says she felt the misery leave her body and in its place came a euphoria. It was said she then took back these grapes to her king, upon consuming the grapes himself he immediately ordered grapes to be grown to the purpose of wine production.

What we do really know is that the Ancient Greece played a large part in the development of modern day wine as well. Around the year 1600 BC, the Greeks discovered wine from ancient Egyptians, Persians, and Mesopotamians; who all had been making wine for approximately 800 to 1000 years. As far as history indicates the Greeks were responsible for bringing the concept of wine into Europe. While they were using herbs and spices to modify flavors, it was really the Romans who brought viniculture to life. The study of wine making, or viniculture really began to take off in the Roman Empire for two reasons. They were growing different types of grapes and noticing that the genetics of the grapes was a huge factor on the outcome of the final product. The second major contribution that the Romans made was the improvement to the aging process. The Romans began aging their wine in oak barrels, this was extremely crucial for three reasons; the containers were impermeable to air, kept the wine out of light, and also the oak gave the wine a very specific flavor that still sought after even to this day. After the Romans, much of the world had not only been exposed to wine, but the finer side of it. Viniculture had consumed Europe; especially in Italy, France, and Spain and by this time(Approximately ) there was quite a large market for merchant ships carrying large quantities of wine for trading purposes

Thanks to the diligence of our wine loving ancestors, the modern day wine scene is incredibly exciting. There are several hundred different varietals of wine in the modern, which can be used to make all different kinds of wine from Red to White to Rose, and even sparkling wine. There is a wine that is said to pair well with virtually every type of food (from personal experience, I believe this to be true). It is my true opinion that, if you are interested in wine there is most certainly something out there for you that can and will be one of the most pleasant experiences your palate can undergo. Hopefully in the near future I can help you determine what your tastes and with any luck help you enjoy wine!

As we left off last time, Cork vs the Screw cap

As we left off last time, many people have begun to switch from corking their wines, to putting a screw top on their bottles. As we discussed before, there are some benefits to both sides. Firstly corks have been in use for hundreds of years, removing a cork from a bottle does produce “music to my ears”, and not to mention that corks are very commonly collected. As far as screw tops go, they can be stored upright (wine enclosed with cork must be stored on its side), they are very easy to open, and also very easy to reclose.

The ongoing argument for corks is that they are the classic way to seal up a bottle of wine, the cork has even become iconic even for wine drinkers. I know that when I am choosing a bottle of wine, my company does greatly affect which bottle I will choose. That is to say that if I’m going to visit some people who I think are a little more snoody, I NEVER like to bring a screw top over, wouldn’t want them to think I’m cheap. Maybe if we broke down the cork tree a little more we could begin to understand why it has been so successful since the 17th century.  Cork trees live to be about 250 years old, and in that time their bark can be harvested anywhere from twenty-five to thirty two times. The reason that cork works so well is the protective chemical called suberin, which is a waxy substance that makes the Cork Oak resistant to rot, fire, and it causes the bark to be impermeable to both liquid and gasses. Another thing about the production of cork is that it actually is a fairly eco-friendly trade also. Since the trees live so long, and the growers do what they can to preserve them, it ends up being pretty green.

Screw tops are no joke in the wine world now. Many vintners have begun turning to this relatively new method, and more than ever it really is taking off. There are several reason the obvious ones that were previously stated such as ease of opening and storage, but beyond that there are even more reasons the person making the wine would want to switch out his corks for the everyday cap. The primary reason being consistency. Perhaps the largest trouble winemakers have with corks, is that they can offer incredibly different results from one cork to another. Many studies have indicated that one cork sample can be 100 times more/less porous than any other given sample. This really does make it tricky for vintners as they have no idea which cork they are potentially sticking in their bottle, and if they are wrong they just might have some spoilage.

Corks can spoil wine not only by being too porous, but by bringing some type of pollutant into the wine. Pollutants can come in many forms first and foremost cork itself, has a flavor and a smell, if you stop your wine with a cork then it will end up effecting the aroma and the taste. Then there are the other things you have to worry about. A lot of people have been writing about how some of the treatments done to the natural stoppers has caused them to become infected by Trichloroanisole , or TCA. This chemical compound has been known to cause many wines to spoil. It is at large mostly in the corks of the spoiled wine; there are other chemical compounds like this one but TCA is the most commonly found culprit.

If vintners do ever cease corking their wines, I will be very upset. If you make 500 cases of wine, and you end up having to replace 15 or even 50 bottles of wine due to a bad cork, so what? If everyone switches over to screw tops (won’t ever happen), then the art of removing the cork is gone. Trust me I’ve dealt with my fair share of crumbly and stubborn corks, but at the end of the day I love the cork. Don’t get me wrong I don’t walk past a good bottle of wine because of the way it is capped, but I do prefer the traditional method.

Cork or Screw Top?

As we modernize the way we make wine, by learning new things about the grapes, and the chemical process which occurs during fermentation, we also have begun to modernize the way we preserve wine. If you take a look at how wine was originally stored, you see that the up until the Roman Empire had taken to drinking wine, wine was preserved using oil. They did this simply by pouring oils so that they would sit on top of the wine in order to prevent oxidation, but obviously this method did not allow much room for aging, and it provided for especially difficult transportation. Then the Romans came along with their fancy glass blowing and once they had taken to wine, they began blowing bottles for it. Soon after, they started corking the wine bottles in order to seal them. This method has been in regular practice for the last 1800 years or so. It has been by far the most successful way to enclose wine since the beginning, but perhaps the cork’s job is finally being threatened.

Over the last decade or so many people have begun using an alternative method, they are using screw tops. There are a lot of benefits to screw tops, they’re cheaper to make and easier to open. This isn’t good enough for some people however. If you ask an avid wine drinker what their take is on wine enclosures, most of them will say “fancy” wines are typically sealed using a natural cork.  Some winemakers are trying to end that stigma. New Zealand especially is trying to eradicate that common belief, they are now putting screw tops on 95% of their wines.  Not only New Zealand, but many winemakers here in the US are also using the new way to cap their wines.

There is an actual study being conducted as we speak by the students of UC Davis. They have taken 600 bottles of Sauvignon Blanc and have preserved it three different ways. The ever so controversial screw top, and then corked both with natural and synthetic materials. They aren’t claiming to determine which method of enclosure is “better” but rather they intend to study the different effects that each type of sealant will have, so that winemakers know which type to choose. The information they gather will very likely be helpful to more than just the people making the wine, but also the people who are planning to drink it. As far as studies have concluded thus far the screw capped wines do allow aging, but it does occur at a slower rate since it breathe as much, but can guarantee a more consistent product.

One group that seems to be completely up in arms are the French. They are arguing to the teeth that not using a cork in wine is far too tacky, and that corks are the classic and proper way to enclose wine. People who are gung ho for the corks arguments’ include that that screw tops cannot allow wine to properly breathe, and that for the long run this will have consequences for aging wine. Maybe they’re right, but then again they did think they made the best Cab in the world fourty years ago and they were wrong about that. Perhaps they’re just being snoody as they are so notoriously known for. But then again they are right on some level, I mean who doesn’t love hearing that satisfying “pop” of the cork, and I know I love to collect corks to make bird houses and trivets, and other random things around the house. My only question is, do I have much longer to make my birdhouses, our not? The question that does come to mind though, what is the most efficient way to enclose wine?

Do you Really get what you Pay for?

Perhaps one of the biggest dilemmas in the world of wine drinkers is how much should people be spending on your wine. It is obvious that you can’t drink wine that you can’t afford, but is there much difference between and twenty dollar bottle, and a hundred dollar bottle? There were plenty of results to be found on the subject, the difficult part was deciding how to interpret them. There is so much back and forth on the issue.

If you were to go to a party where there are other people who drink wine, if you bring an expensive bottle, people are going to gawk at it. I’ve been to enough dinner/wine parties to have seen it myself, even at times I have caught myself open-jawed. Despite the fact that I am a true believer that the price of a wine and a value are completely uncorrelated, many disagree. It is simple human nature for us to expect more out of something we are willing to pay a higher price for. On many accounts, the more expensive options are easily better, but with things like wine it can be so subjective. There is psychological evidence that suggests people will believe something is better just because they paid more for it, so what can we say to the facts? The facts are that people really do misconceive the actual quality for higher price tags. On the other hand however, most people who do make good wines don’t let it go cheaply. It’s a total conundrum.

Perhaps blind tastes tests can help determine this, but just to be sure we’re doing this right I took a look at the results of both trained wine critics and the results of amateur wine drinkers. As I was reading this article, I found that there was a study conducted in which there were four bottles of wine into four identical decanters. The first and second decanters were filled with relatively expensive wines ($150-$75) and the third was filled with one that was less than ten dollars, the fourth being a control filled with one of the first two wines again. The results couldn’t have been more surprising; the two wines that were the same actually ended up being rated the most differently, and cheapest wine used actually ended up outscoring its more expensive counterparts. The results dictate that when you know what you’re drinking, you are more prejudice and you do expect more expensive wine to be better. What about the critics you ask? They were a different story. The same experimenter, Steven Levitt, conducted the same double blind taste test with the critics and they were able to decipher much more clearly than the amateurs, they were even better at noting the similarities between the double sample. This same study almost makes it impossible to say.

Other Taste tests that were very similar to the Paris Tasting of 1976 have been conducted since then. One very famous one was a few years after the original, which was replicated because many of the French winemakers had complained that their wines were served before their proper aging time. So once again the experiment was conducted, and once again the California wines reigned supreme. Since then there have been innumerous experiments conducted that have strayed into many different categories. We have been using this to prove quality from producing regions all over the world since. One in particular, “The Judgment of Princeton” , seems to back up the fact that people can’t taste price. This time several inexpensive wines from New Jersey were chosen, and a few famous French wines were chosen, one was $750 dollars a bottle! The end result was that the French wines won by the skin of their teeth even though many of their wines cost more than ten times that of their New Jersey competition. That’s almost hard to believe! But it’s the truth, there is good stuff out there for a good price, but then again there is a lot of crappy stuff out there for a low price too.

The reality seems to be that if you want to enjoy what your drinking, get something you can easily afford. You need to find out what it is you really like. For some people they want something big and bold that has a flavor that lingers on their tongue, while others want to drinks something fruity with a light and crisp finish. TRUST ME there are a million little nuances about wine that will come to love and hate as a bonifide wine drinker. There are so many qualities that a wine can have and they can all be in the same glass! With that being said, there are infinite combinations of experiences when drinking different types of wine, so it is your job to figure out which qualities you prefer most and build off of that. If you have snobby friends that want to drink fancy wine that you can’t buy let them have their fun. It does not mean that you can’t enjoy you cheaper wine too, after all as it turns out most of them don’t even know the difference between the two. They just think what their drinking is better. One study found here shows even critics being fooled in blind taste tests all the while they think they know so much. There are going to be certain bottles of wine that will always be appealing to you, maybe something that is worth a little more that you are willing to pay for, but if that’s the case, maybe you should splurge and save it for a special time, or even put some money aside to try it. After all you only live once, so if something is so important to you, find a way to get it.

After all this, all I can say to you is, if you really want to maximize your experience when drinking wine do your research. Maybe a good place to get started would be a wine mixer at a friend’s house, if you don’t have friends who are into wine there are taste tests all over the place, just google wine expos or events in your area and I’m sure you’d find something. These are opportunities to try many different wines side by side which can be useful when you are trying to discover what you like. Once you get a few wines that you really enjoy break them down, decipher what makes them so delicious, then you can begin to look for wines that have the same qualities . If you do that, all of a sudden you know what you like!

Who is the Cabernet King?

While the California wine making in California is not only abundant, but many of the vintners have become quite artisan as well, perhaps the best in the world. Take Cabernet Sauvignon for example, the French had been holding the crown for hundreds of years as “King of Cabernet”. At the time, or in the early 1970’s if someone wanted a “nice” cab, they needed to bring a French selection.  In 1976 there was a British merchant named Steven Spurrier, who put on an event called the The Paris Tasting of 1976 . He had completely expected the French varietals to outscore their California counterparts, seeing as he solely sold french wine. This outcome was the favorably namely, because the Cabernet grape did originate from the Bordeaux region of France. This gave the French a great advantage, because they had the grapes for many years before its vines made their way out to California.

In the spring of 76, the “Judgment of Paris” was executed, and the results were out; California wines outperformed their French opponents in every category. This news really blew people away, because the American wines were often less than half the price of the French selections. The top performer from the Golden State was the 1973 Stags Leap Cabernet Sauvignon, and the French best was a Chateau Montrose 1970.

Despite the fact that the French wines had lost in the competition, and that even the rise of California Cabs could not kill the pride of the French. To this day they compete side by side in competition, and of course, the debate is still on today. For instance, at the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, they hold a competition every year here in the City to showcase wines from all around the world. It is no surprise that in the past years California has been dominating the Cabernet Category. There is promise from the former masters of the craft; the youth in the Bordeaux region. There is a buzz going around that they are getting back in the game. A French wine proprietor named, Thomas Hervé, who stated that they are looking to change their wine on a different level as Hervé stated, “And the winemakers, especially the young generation, are doing more in the vineyard, with a new approach in the viticulture, with less and less intervention. Everything starts there.”  instead of manipulating wine with chemicals, they want to control the balance of the wine from the vineyards. This approach will be very green and can lead way to a cleaner, healthier wine. Not only that, but these people feel as though their forefathers were lacking in other areas of wine production.

These people are trying to get back in the game full swing, which means not only are they changing their wine, but they are planning to hit all avenues of media as Herve said, “My father was only involved in the wine production. But I have to be in the wine production, the communication, information, social networks, the promotion of my wines, all those things. All that is very new and going really, really fast.”, in addition, “It’s more and more important to be in contact with the final consumers. It’s something that the buyers expect more and more”.  With these new additions to their game, Thomas Hervé and other producers from the Bordeaux region, are doing everything they can to put themselves back on the map as the “Kings of Cabernet”. Not only is Napa Valley giving the French a hard time nowadays, but all over California excellent Cabs are being produced. Some of the regions in California that are also known for making great Cabernet are Alexander Valley, Sonoma Country, Dry Creek Valley, Paso Robles, Amador County, Lodi, and many other regions all throughout our great state of California. It is these regions, and many others around the United States, that have caused the decline in sales of French wines. They may be sitting on a lot of unsold wine, but the French are trying their best to make it back. Perhaps with some elbow grease in the vineyards, and some time on social media is exactly the recipe they need for success. Until they figure it out, I’m buying locally.

*Quotes used were from Thomas Herve from the ariticle found by clicking

http://www.winespectator.com/blogs/show/id/48477

Red vs White, Which Side are You On?

Now that we know a little more about the origins of wine, we can start to become a bit more technical. It’s no secret that there are a plethora of different types of grape varietals out there, and that most of them fit into the two major wine categories. There’s red wine, and then there’s white. The main difference in the vintage process in the fact that White grapes have their skins and seeds removed before the grapes are crushed whereas the red wines use whole grapes; skins, seeds, and all. On a chemical level red and white wine are very similar. There is one major difference however, the red wines are left with more chemicals from the skin, acids, tannins, and it gives the wine a different texture and more complex flavor.
As far as taste is concerned, the wines couldn’t be more different.  This difference is due to the fact that the tannin from the red grape skins causes many chemical differences. While both are high in acid content, the red wines do preserve much better because of the chemical characteristics of tannins. Most White wine is considered to be sweet, fruity, and light. The red wines can also have a lot of fruit flavors in them, but they have a tendency to have a “drier” taste than that of their sweet and light counter-part. Also, with the higher acid and tannin count, the red wines have a tendency to have a more dramatic aroma and effect on the palate, due to being richer. Here is a chart that helps describe major red and white varieties quite well. Many people will be able to tell you which they prefer, but if you plan to drink wine for enjoyment, then listen to the voice in your head. That guy in my head always knows what I like best!                                                                      If you are trying to make the healthy choice, that’s where things really get interesting. In terms of calories and sugar, red wine on average is higher in both, but by this chart you can see its almost not worth mentioning. The big difference is a component of wine found in the skin of the grapes, it called reservatrol. This chemical has been known to reduce bad cholesterol, increase good cholesterol, protect red blood cells, prevent heart disease, and even prevent cancer. With that being said, this doesn’t mean you should go out and drink a bottle of red wine every day, according to this article by the Mayo Clinic. Rather, the healthy level of moderation is one glass(5oz)  of red wine per day for women, and two glasses per day for men.. If you want to get this supplement, you must drink red wine, as this chemical is only found in the skin of the grapes, and only red wine has the skins on as before mentioned.

On a personal level, I do like red wine better. I feel that they are much more exciting to drink. I love the complexities that the acids and tannins bring forward, and also the aromas flavors of red wine are so much more intense! Red wines also age better because of the chemicals they have in them. Not only that but who could turn down something so delicious with all those alleged health benefits right? With this blog it would by my ambition to fully explore all the different types of wine, but for sake of my own sanity, and yours I would like to devote my studies specifically to exploring the characteristics of the different Reds found in California. Even though I have narrowed down the appalations, or wine growing regions, California is home to an extensive number of varieties of red wine alone. But throughout this blog we will be exploring red wine that will be readily available in the stores surrounding the Bay Area, which is central to many famous wine growing regions. So we won’t run out of things to talk about.

The Roots of Viniculture

Today wine is consumed by millions of people all over the world. Almost everyone knows how the process works, you simply smash some grapes and preserve their juices, and with time you have wine, in a nut shell. There is no detailed records that clearly indicate the actual origin of where wine was first discovered; but there is a legend that a woman in Persia, more specifically a harem of a king holds the credit.  The tale is that she was banished by the King and became very depressed and even suicidal. She allegedly tried to commit suicide by drinking the juice of grapes that had long spoiled in a clay pot. Instead of reaching her demise the tale says she felt the misery leave her body and in its place came a euphoria. It was said she then took back these grapes to her king, upon consuming the grapes himself he immediately ordered grapes to be grown to the purpose of wine production.

What we do really know is that the Ancient Greece played a large part in the development of modern day wine as well. Around the year 1600 BC, the Greeks discovered wine from ancient Egyptians, Persians, and Mesopotamians; who all had been making wine for approximately 800 to 1000 years. As far as history indicates the Greeks were responsible for bringing the concept of wine into Europe. While they were using herbs and spices to modify flavors, it was really the Romans who brought viniculture to life. The study of wine making, or viniculture really began to take off in the Roman Empire for two reasons. They were growing different types of grapes and noticing that the genetics of the grapes was a huge factor on the outcome of the final product. The second major contribution that the Romans made was the improvement to the aging process. The Romans began aging their wine in oak barrels, this was extremely crucial for three reasons; the containers were impermeable to air, kept the wine out of light, and also the oak gave the wine a very specific flavor that still sought after even to this day. After the Romans, much of the world had not only been exposed to wine, but the finer side of it. Viniculture had consumed Europe; especially  in Italy, France, and Spain and by this time(Approximately ) there was quite a large market for merchant ships carrying large quantities of wine for trading purposes

Thanks to the diligence of our wine loving ancestors, the modern day wine scene is incredibly exciting. There are several hundred different varietals of wine in the modern, which can be used to make all different kinds of wine from Red to White to Rose, and even sparkling wine. There is a wine that is said to pair well with virtually every type of food (from personal experience, I believe this to be true). It is my true opinion that, if you are interested in wine there is most certainly something out there for you that can and will be one of the most pleasant experiences your palate can undergo. Hopefully in the near future I can help you determine what your tastes and with any luck help you enjoy wine!

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