Wine history started in Europe. No wonder European countries fall under the Old World wine label.
Wine in Europe comes from very old traditions. Wine was considered healthy. Wine and other alcoholic drinks were very popular in ancient times because water was not safe to drink. Wine, beer and such have been an important part of history for economic reasons.
Classical, full of historical pride, wine heaven, maker of elite wines, maker of ordinary wines, Europe is all these but is also brimming with new ideas and new projects.
Old World wines, the foundation
Wines in Europe represent all that is traditional in winemaking. In no other place a wine reflects the culture of the people who created it and the flavors of the land in which it grew as it does in Europe. The wines are named after the places where they were created, not after the grapes from which they were born. European wines follow the local tastes more than international trends. There is a common legislation for all countries and their DOC system, grape varieties and processes are very much regulated.
True, wines in Europe have less fruitiness than others, due to their traditional grape varieties and winemaking methods. But why should European countries change what they have been doing very well for hundreds of years?
Just for that reason. Those centuries of experience mean a deep knowledge of winemaking and some winemakers find the DOC regulation too rigid; they want to experiment with other grapes and other techniques. Some have gone further than regulated creating excellent wines and innovation.
Wine and food are linked together and and important part of the French culture. They have the tradition, diversity of land, and a wide array of grape varieties, all the right conditions to produce great wines and that is why French wines are the model. Discover wine in France.
Wines in Italy are in every day meals. Find a very brief description of most porpular Italian wines, to help you choose your Italian wine in a restaurant or for a home Italian dinner.
Wine in Spain is ancient history as Spain is one of the oldest wine producer countries in Europe, yet Spain is the origin of some of the most modern wines in the European landscape, without forgetting the homey wines that don't make it to the great catalogs but help you to have a memorable experience with Spanish tapas.
Germany is the 10th largest wine producer in the world but its presence on the supermarket shelves outside areas of direct German influence does not reflect this. Wine districts in Germany get very busy to be ready for wine festivals, which in Germany are many, supplying great wines and fun.
Wine in Portugal has a history that dates back over to the time of the ancient Phoenicians, Celts, and Romans. This remarkable history, coupled with geographical influences and an intrinsic role in the nation's culture and economy, has positioned Portugal as one of the world's most dynamic and unique wine-producing countries.
From its stunning wine regions to its myriad of indigenous grape varieties, Austrian wines offer a unique experience for the palate.
Discover the new renaissance of Greek wines. The slogan for Greece asks you to explore your senses and this applies particularly to their food and wine so explore Greek wines and see what all this is about. While you are about there, remember that the Black Sea region is close by and it has a long and often turbulent history but is perhaps now emerging from its past. The Black Sea countries have a long and wide experience in wine making and it is time to discover Black Sea wine.
Not wine but beer in Belgium. Beer is the beverage that calls out in Belgium. though wine can be drunk with lunch and dinner, beer is often the best accompaniment for a Belgian meal. It is not the only country to favor beer; when you think of Ireland, one of the first things you might think of is Irish beer.