Did you know that wine is one of mankind’s oldest and most cherished beverages? Let me take you on a journey through the history of this amazing drink!
If we go back to its most ancient roots, wine finds its origins thousands of years ago in Mesopotamia and Egypt. In fact, the earliest evidence of wine production dates back to around 6000 BC. Ancient civilisations considered wine a gift from the gods and used it in religious ceremonies and rituals.
It was not, however, until ancient Greece and Rome that wine culture reached its peak. The Greeks had a wine deity called Dionysus, while the Romans worshipped Bacchus. Both were a kind of liberating god that allowed them to disconnect from their normal state of consciousness, through music, ecstasy and, of course, wine. Both civilisations promoted viticulture and expanded knowledge of wine production and consumption.
Naturally, as the Greek and Roman empires expanded, they brought their own culture with them to the different territories they occupied, transmitting their teachings about wine to new regions. Wine became an integral part of the diet and economy in different parts of the world, from Europe to the Middle East.
During the Middle Ages, monks and religious orders played a crucial role in preserving vineyards and making wine. Since water was not of good quality and was a source of infections and diseases such as plague, which devastated a large part of the population, wine was practically the most consumed beverage during the Middle Ages. Most wine consumption came from monasteries and convents, soldiers, workers and servants. Added to this was the important role of wine in the Christian liturgy, a central event in the culture and society of the time.
With the arrival of the Renaissance, important advances were made in winemaking, including the classification of wines according to their quality. The insatiable curiosity that characterises this historical period was the most powerful driving force for its development, leading those most interested to delve deeper into viticulture and the art of winemaking.
During the 15th and 16th centuries, European explorers brought vines to newly discovered lands, such as America and Australia. These regions began to develop their own winemaking traditions, giving rise to today’s diversity of wines around the world.