• Wine Grape Species

    Date: 19-07-2017

    Like all plants, we classify grapevines according to the system of taxonomy laid out by Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus in 1753. Grapevines belong to the order called Vitales, the family called Vitaceae and the genus Vitis. The genus Vitis has about sixty different species

  • Red Wine Grapes and Their Personalities

    Date: 19-07-2017

    We use the terms “black grapes” and “red grapes” interchangeably. In either case, these grapes produce what is commonly termed “red” wine. Red grapes vary immensely as to the climates they prefer, the acidity they bring to the table, an

  • White Wine Grapes and Their Personalities

    Date: 19-07-2017

    What we call “white” wine grapes actually run from green to golden in color. We call these grapes and the wine they produce “white” for convenience. No prizes will be awarded for guessing which one we start with. a. Chardonnay: The Lady

  • Vine Diseases and Pests

    Date: 19-07-2017

    We have already covered phylloxera. Phylloxera might be the worst scourge ever to hit wine grapes, but it is by no means the only one. Vines are subject to attack from pests that range from deer to birds. We cover here the major fungal vine disease, several bacterial dise

  • World Wine Regions Europe Spain

    Date: 17-07-2017

    The Phoenicians—before the Greeks—brought winemaking to Spain by 1000 BC. Spain has extremely varied climates and terrains, from the arid central plateau, northeast to the sea spray of Rias Baixas in Galicia, south to the sunny climes of Andalucía. Alth

  • World Wine Regions Europe Luxembourg

    Date: 17-07-2017

    Wine has been produced in Luxembourg continuously since Roman times. Luxembourg wine production is centered in the country’s southeast, where it is largely in the hands of cooperatives who sell the wine under the name of "Vinsmoselle". The cooperatives operate a spa

  • World Wine Regions Europe England

    Date: 17-07-2017

    The English have always taken wine quite seriously, even if they have not been able to grow many vines because of their high latitude and wet rainy climate. Global warming is helping them, however. Growers are choosing their varieties with care, opting for climate-appropr

  • Europe Hungary

    Date: 17-07-2017

    Ask most wine drinkers what they know about Hungary, and the answer will likely be two wines: Tokaji and Bull’s Blood. These two wines sit at opposite extremes of quality and price. Tokaji Aszú, from the northeast of Hungary, is the formidabl

  • World Wine Regions Europe Slovakia

    Date: 17-07-2017

    Slovakia produces its wine along most of its southern border with Austria and Hungary.  The Malokarpatská, “Lesser Carpathian” wine region, is in the west. Veltlínske Zelenéis is the most grown

  • World Wine Regions Europe Serbia and Kosovo

    Date: 17-07-2017

    Wine in Serbia goes back to Roman time, but the twentieth century saw the near total destruction of Serbia’s grapevines. First came the devastation of phylloxera, then two world wars, the post-war era of communist collectivization of agriculture in Yugoslavia, and f

  • World Wine Regions Europe Macedonia

    Date: 17-07-2017

    The geographic region called Macedonia stretches over northern Greece, part of Bulgaria, and the present-day landlocked country of Macedonia, which occupies the region’s northern third. The Republic of Macedonia is inhabited by a majority of Macedonians, who speak a

  • World Wine Regions Europe Romania

    Date: 17-07-2017

    Romania has a romance language, deep connections with France, and a wine culture that dates back to the Romans from which the country’s language, and name, derives. Although on the same latitudes as France, one cannot stretch the parallels too far. The Romanian clim

  • World Wine Regions Europe Moldova

    Date: 17-07-2017

    Moldova won its independence with the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. Its people are ethnically similar to the nearby Romanians. Wine has been a significant part of Moldovan culture for many centuries. The Moldovan economy relies heavily on wine exports to a number of c

  • World Wine Regions Europe Cyprus

    Date: 17-07-2017

    Recent archaeological evidence suggests that winemaking on the island of Cyprus dates back to 3500 BC, more than 5500 years ago. A mere thousand years ago the island’s sweet wine Commandaria had a reputation second to none in Europe. Winemaking declined with the Ott

  • World Wine Regions Asia Japan

    Date: 18-07-2017

    Take the humidity and temperature extremes of the US east coast, the similar difficulties of China’s east coast, and add a few typhoons, score the country with crags and precipitous mountains, and you get Japan—veritably a terrible place to try to grow Europea

  • The Wine Regions of France Champagne

    Date: 18-07-2017

    Champagne is the northernmost wine region of France. To produce the sparkling wine called Champagne, the maker must first create a still wine out of the juice of grapes grown in the delimited Champagne region. This region is relatively large and spread out, with different

  • Piemonte (Piedmont)

    Date: 18-07-2017

    The name Piemonte derives from Medieval Latin ad pedem montium, meaning “at the foot of the mountains.” The reference is to the region’s location at the foot of the Alps. Located in northwest Italy, Piemonte borders both Switzerland and France.

  • The Wine Regions of France Provence

    Date: 18-07-2017

    Provence subsisted for years on often ordinary rosé, purchased as a thirst quencher by many a tourist in this paradise under the sun. Rosé still accounts for 50% of production, but quality red and whites are now holding their own. The region

  • World Wine Regions Europe Italy

    Date: 18-07-2017

    We finished France by explaining the apparent blank spots on the map, those regions where wine is not produced. We do not have to do this with Italy. Italy has twenty regions. Out of these twenty regions, twenty produce wine. The Italian wine map has no blank spo

  • The Wine Regions of France Those Blank Spots on the Map

    Date: 18-07-2017

    The blank spots on the map of France, circled and numbered above, require some explanation (beyond the fact that every inch of France produces some kind of interesting food).  Blank Spot 1, representing Normandy and Brittany,