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To A Person Who Wants To Broaden His Knowledge Of Wine

Oct 12, 2007
Wine is what is known as the "drink of the Gods". With a long and distinguished history, to truly appreciate wine, you need to know a little about it.

Naturally you know that wine comes from fermented grapes. Grapes ferment on their own without having to add any extra sugar, nutrients, acids or enzymes. The only addition to the fermenting grapes is yeast. There are different types of grapes and there are different types of yeasts that are used.

Wine dates back to 6000 BC and 5000 BC with it's origins in Georgia and Iran. Archaeological digs have provided evidence that clearly shows the domestication of the grapevine around the Near East, Sumer and Egypt during the third millennium BC. Then we look at the oldest evidence there is that show wine production in Europe. Greece, to be more precise, dates back 6,500 years ago.

Depending on where you look in history, you will get different uses for wine. Wine is actually in the recorded history of Egypt, where wine was used in many ceremonies. The Ancient Greeks brought wine into Italy, France and Spain. Reading the works of Homer and Aesop, wine was referred to quite often. In fact, many of the wine producing regions that are prominent today were started by the Romans.

Wine has been used in ceremonies to celebrate certain life events. Different cultures also used wine for its many medicinal purposes and cosmetic reasons. Legends were also created, Cleopatra promised Marc Anthony that she would 'drink the value of the province' in one cup of wine, and then she drank a cup of wine with an expensive pearl in it. Wine is more used today for enjoyment and celebration, though it still has medicinal benefits. A glass of red wine is still good for the cardiovascular system.

There are various different types of wine, and to classify them simply into red or white is indeed an oversimplification of a truly diverse drink. It is true that red and white wines have their own differences; there is also a variety of differences with in each group. Each type offering its own distinct taste and personality.

To look at wines in a general scope there are certain wines that should accompany certain foods. The white wines generally go with seafood, chicken, Chinese food, turkey and occasionally pork. The red wines usually go with red meats; this would include sausages, pastas, veal, duck, lamb and naturally beef roasts and filets. However, there is not golden rule that says you can not drink which ever you prefer with our meal. This is only a recommendation; find your own preference with experimentation.

Wines are made all over the world and imported. It would literally take to much time and space to list every type of wine available from all over the world. We can narrow our scope to jus the US for the purpose of our discussion.

California wines are well known because the conditions are ideal for growing and harvesting wine grapes. From California you will find chardonnay, French colombard, Riesling and sauvignon blanc just to name a few. These are all white wines that can range from bone dry to very sweet and usually not aged in wood barrels.

California also has red wines such as merlot, pinot noir, zinfandel and blush wines. These are usually drier and slightly more acidic. These are usually kept in wooden barrels to age and offer a deep flavor. Red wines get their color from the skin of the grape as that grape juice itself is clear.

This is only the beginning of your wine education. History and such can only tell you so much. You need to experience wine as well. Wine tasting can be a wonderful experience to let you find the type of wines that you prefer. Pop a cork and enjoy the drink of the Gods.
About the Author
Alex Olson is a professional journalist who wrote a lot of articles about wine, its origins, types, the art of its tasting , etc.
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