French Wine Fun Facts

champaign Glasses and  Eiffel tower in Paris

When it comes to wine, France is revered for the variety, quality and quantity of wine it produces.  Here are some fun facts about French wine that might be of interest… • In 2014, France was the #1 producer of wine in the world, according to the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV).  The OIV…

Early US Wine Fun Facts

iStock_000039673504Large old wine barrels

Here are some fun facts about the early days of the US wine industry from noted historian Thomas Pinney’s A History of Wine in America. • It is believed that Spaniards in Santa Elena, South Carolina made the first wine in the continental US around 1568. The oldest continuous tradition of winemaking in the US dates…

The Enduring Legacy of Prohibition

Red and white wine in bottles

National Prohibition had a profound impact upon the US wine industry. Not only did it have a major effect on wine producers and consumers during the 13-year period when it was in force, but the consequences linger to this day—81 years after Repeal. To learn more about this seminal event in the history of the…

Rebuilding the US Wine Industry After Prohibition

iStock_000004894904Medium sonoma vineyard

National Prohibition had a profound impact upon the US wine industry. Not only did it have a major effect on wine producers and consumers during the 13-year period when it was in force, but the consequences linger to this day—nearly 81 years after Repeal. To learn more about this seminal event in the history of…

The US Wine Industry During Prohibition

iStock_000025777122Small abandoned vineyard

National Prohibition had a profound impact upon the US wine industry. Not only did it have a major effect on wine producers and consumers during the 13-year period when it was in force, but the consequences linger to this day—nearly 81 years after Repeal. To learn more about this seminal event in the history of…

Ancient Wine Fun Facts

iStock_000035100642Small - anphorae

Mankind has been making wine from grapes for thousands of years. Here are some fun facts about wine in the ancient world: • The oldest evidence of grape wine comes from six vessels found in Iran which contain the residue of 7,000-year-old wine. The oldest known winery, which is located in southern Armenia, is about 6,000…

Wacky Wine Laws

Cork screw and wine bottle

In 1933, the 21st Amendment to the United States Constitution was passed. It ended Prohibition, the period during which the manufacture, distribution, and sale of alcoholic beverages was illegal, and essentially gave individual states absolute power to regulate alcoholic beverages within their own borders. This legal architecture, combined with evolving cultural attitudes towards the consumption…

Wine as Medicine: Part Three – The Modern Age

Medical stethoscope and a wine glass

By Dr. Philip Norrie, MBBS, MA, MSc, MSocSc (Hons), PhD, MD (cand) In the 18th century, doctors frequently prescribed wine for medicinal purposes. The leading English physician of his day, Dr. William Heberden (1710-1801), advocated the use of wine to benefit one’s health. As a result, the use of wine as a medicine increased in…

Wine as Medicine: Part Two – The Middle Ages

iStock_000002088257Small medieval chalices

By Dr. Philip Norrie, MBBS, MA, MSc, MSocSc (Hons), PhD, MD (cand) After the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476, Europe entered the “Dark Ages” where many traditions and much learning were lost, including knowledge of Greek healing—which included the use of wine as a medicine. During this period, it was Byzantine physicians…

Wine as Medicine: Part One – The Ancient World

iStock_000010970965Small -baccus

By Dr. Philip Norrie, MBBS, MA, MSc, MSocSc (Hons), PhD, MD (cand) Wine was widely used as a medicine in the ancient world. In fact, wine is man’s oldest known medicine. It was well suited to this purpose for a variety of reasons. First, it was easy to make. Ancient winemakers used whatever grapes were…