Historical methods

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Nitasch

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This may have been discussed three million times over the years of this forum, but I cannot find the thread in my five minute search.

As I have learned more about wine making and all the of the ingredients, equipment and chemicals involved.....I wondered how on earth the first wine was made....they did not have access to the additives we have and MUST use now...yet this is the beverage is thousands of years old.

I am sure if I were to pick up a book in my spare time (between running three businesses and three kids, four if you count the one I am married to ;) ) I could get the answers as to the methods used.

But I thought I would ask the experts here if they have a Readers Digest version of what additives and methods were used hundreds if not thousand of years ago before this all turned into a science project?
 

arcticsid

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great question, I too would be interested to know these things, be patient, I am sure one of our members could indeed help out. on answering this.
 

Wade E

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Im guessing that they didnt have any of the stuff we use now but we as a people now are much pickier then thou! They didnt care if a wine was preserved cause they werent going to create a wine cellar and store it downt there for years as they were drinking like fiends. They really didnt care about a little cloudiness as they were drinkng much of it to get drunk.
 

Nitasch

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Very funny Wade, could be a lot of truth to your theory!

I remember watching a history channel show...where they say wine was made and drank due to poor water conditions, and this basically made it a safer liquid to drink.. that was a few years ago, and before I got interested in making it....should have paid more attention.
 

Wine4Me

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WONDERING?? how much info about the old ways of making wine has been lost in time??? I mean, we use all these chemicals that they didn't have then but did they have "old wife's tale" remedies that was similar??
Hope I explained what I mean correctly?? ;)
 

shoes

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im thinking that WAY back then, they wernt keeping wines and beers very long. it "kept" as long as they needed it to. as time went on, people learned that if you kept things kinda clean, hey, things "kept" alot better. so, now we can keep the fruits of our labor that much longer:D
 

shoes

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Im guessing that they didnt have any of the stuff we use now but we as a people now are much pickier then thou! They didnt care if a wine was preserved cause they werent going to create a wine cellar and store it downt there for years as they were drinking like fiends. They really didnt care about a little cloudiness as they were drinkng much of it to get drunk.
then again, Wade's got a hell of a point:D:D:D
 

Wade E

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Im sure they made some good wines bt Im sure then percentage of good to bad was a heck of a lot worse then what we gwt now but who knows these people were also very intelligent and built stuff that we still cant build easily with all the sophisticated equipment and computers we have now.
 
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Finguy

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Some of the history of wine and winemaking

In biblical times the wines were not aged. In fact, it was considered bad form to give someone "old wine". Throughout, it refers to giving people their "new wine". It wasn't until the 1600's that the benefits of barrel aging were recognized.
During Roman times the wine was drained via a spigot near the bottom of the vessel. To prevent oxidation a layer of olive oil was poured on the top of the wine so it would protect the wine as the level of the wine dropped.

Originally wine vines were not trained, but allowed to grow near and against trees. The reason was birds would eat some of the grapes and would poop out the seeds. This would encourage grape vine growth throughout the vineyard. To this day there are places where the grape vines are not trellised but allowed to grow along the ground and around trees.
 

Boozehag

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I expect if they didnt wait for it to age they wouldnt have known it would be better that way! Lets face it they didnt live that long way back then so maybe time wasnt on their side!

Im thinknig of investing in metal goblets so if my wines end up cloudy then it wont be so noticeable;)
 

kiljoy

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They didn't have to when they had guys that could come to your wedding and convert all of your water to wine on demand!:D

Seriously though, there are still people who use the natural yeast to make their wine with pretty good success. I would guess, around 6000BC, they were not as concerned about the quality as we are today. Red wine with your woolly mamoth steak sir?
 

twissty

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In biblical times the wines were not aged. In fact, it was considered bad form to give someone "old wine". Throughout, it refers to giving people their "new wine". It wasn't until the 1600's that the benefits of barrel aging were recognized.
.
My Guess is that "new wine" referred to fresh, sweet juice that had not fermented.
 

non-grapenut

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I expect if they didnt wait for it to age they wouldnt have known it would be better that way! Lets face it they didnt live that long way back then so maybe time wasnt on their side!

Im thinknig of investing in metal goblets so if my wines end up cloudy then it wont be so noticeable;)
Ah, forget the metal wine goblets, Boozehag. Just lower the lighting...As long as it tastes good, who cares, huh? Or, maybe, make your own ceramic goblets. Why not? We all make our own "whatever" in the forum anyway! Einstein said it's better to be a man of value than a man of success. When the world is ending, I bet they choose to keep us vintner's around.:eek:
 

Boozehag

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Lol, good idea. I have got some tall Boozehag coffee mugs I create that are meant to be for wine masqurading as coffee so you can drink it at work!!!;) Wouldnt take much to make ceramic goblets now would it! Oh and thank goodness for light dimmers! :D

Soooooo who makes what other than wine and where do I go to look? I love creative people, theyre much more interesting!
I checked out Luc's girlfriends art, which is cool by the way Luc...but still finding my way around here in regards to the community and its contents.
 

Nitasch

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I love everyone's sense of humor....but I guess I need to find a book to answer my silly question.

Although, the olive oil reference/post did come close as far as the preservation.

I am not slamming our modern methods at all... We have 11 televisions all hooked up to cable, 14 dvd players (tv's and computer run then the mobile) 6 computers, and one PSP, 2 3g iphones (a computer in itself) a blu ray player and multiple surround sounds, three other cell phones for the little ones, four ipods...every type of coffee maker I know of (not brands, just types) own and or maintain 8 websites blah blah blah.... I am a complete technology nerd in the event that is not clear!!!

I am also cursed with a freakin relentless curiosity or brain function (abnormality maybe) whereas I look at a machine, or food, or recipe etc, and automatically my brain starts storming...."how was this thought of, how was it made, who came up with the idea to first try this, or eat this?" etc.....

So...with wine, and any other spirit, I wondered....how on earth did someone come up with this.... did they have some fruit juice they forgot in a container...then discovered, and it was all funky looking, and smelling, but not wanting to waste it, that person tasted it... etc

I just think weird..... :D
 

twissty

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So...with wine, and any other spirit, I wondered....how on earth did someone come up with this.... did they have some fruit juice they forgot in a container...then discovered, and it was all funky looking, and smelling, but not wanting to waste it, that person tasted it... etc

I just think weird..... :D
Actually the "blush" on the outside of grapes contains wild yeasts. The cultivated wine yeasts we use have all been bred from these

It's pretty easy to envision a container of grapes being left and fermenting on its own.

When there was nothing left to eat but the fermented grapes, someone probably had to choose between eating them or going hungry.

The resulting product made them happy, so they refilled the container the next time they had some grapes and left it out again....
 

non-grapenut

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Lol, good idea. I have got some tall Boozehag coffee mugs I create that are meant to be for wine masqurading as coffee so you can drink it at work!!!;) Wouldnt take much to make ceramic goblets now would it! Oh and thank goodness for light dimmers! :D

Soooooo who makes what other than wine and where do I go to look? I love creative people, theyre much more interesting!
I checked out Luc's girlfriends art, which is cool by the way Luc...but still finding my way around here in regards to the community and its contents.
Stick around the forum! You will find out many of us even grow what we ferment. I am putting in a wheat and barley field this weekend to try my hand at malting barley for completely organic beer. Weeeee. Soon, I will have 3 varieties of hops rhizome vines. Wine and beer. Life is good.
 

Boozehag

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Ahhh I get you. I too wonder at times what made people try certain things...someone had to take the risk once after all!
Sorry I cant help you with information on that. Have you tried wikipedia or answerbus.com?

Stick around the forum! You will find out many of us even grow what we ferment. I am putting in a wheat and barley field this weekend to try my hand at malting barley for completely organic beer. Weeeee. Soon, I will have 3 varieties of hops rhizome vines. Wine and beer. Life is good.
Thats really getting into it isnt it! Love to hear how that goes with the wheat and barley.
I discovered yesterday that if you ask at the supermarket for any fruit that is unsalable you can get fruit for free. You have to cut out the bruises etc but its not far different from windfalls so all good. Got a kilo of peaches yesterday for free when I asked! Now why didnt I think of that earleir? All this fruit Ive been paying for!:rolleyes:
 

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