No matter where someone is from or how extensive his or her background is in wine tasting, there is one thing that all wine lovers have in common: they are fascinated – even moved – by the art of tasting wine. Wine is perhaps the only beverage in the world that is not simply consumed for sustenance, but it is also an art that not many people can easily master. The different textures on one’s palate, the delectable aromas emanating from a glass, and the tear droplets left from swirling the wine create a unique experience that only wine can allow, leaving the taster wanting more.
A Brief History of Wine
Wine is what is known as the “drink of the gods”, dating back to as early as 6000 B.C.. It was first consumed in countries such as Georgia, Iran, and Greece, and around 4500 B.C. it finally made its way to Italian regions. Throughout its extensive and distinguished history, wine has been consumed in various ways by people of different social classes and backgrounds, giving rise to literary references to wine within the work of Homer and Aesop, as well as legends such as that of Cleopatra promising Marc Anthony that she would “drink the value of a province” by drinking a glass of wine with a pearl in it.
William Shakespeare, Henry David Thoreau, and Benjamin Franklin are just a few influential figures in history who indulged in the art of wine drinking. Even Ernest Hemingway reveled in its beauty by saying, “Wine is one of the most civilized things in the world and one of the most natural things of the world that has been brought to the greatest perfection, and it offers a greater range for enjoyment and appreciation than, possibly, any other purely sensory thing.” Considering wine’s significant presence and progressive impact upon different cultures across the world, it begs the question: where does wine stand in society today?
Wine Consumption throughout the Years
To address the latter question, according to Statista, approximately 243 million hectoliters of wine were consumed globally in 2017 – a 20 million increase since 2000. Zion Market Research predicts that the global wine market will reach approximately 423 billion USD by the year 2023. This data further underscores wine’s enormous profitability due to its prevalence throughout the world, and that this particular alcoholic beverage is not going away anytime soon.
But who are considered “wine lovers”, exactly? What does it take for an individual to learn how to properly taste and enjoy the “drink of the gods”?
Wine lovers are students.
People who wish to truly appreciate wine are those who also wish to learn about it. Wine lovers do not only pine after the taste or the sensations which wine evokes, but they also crave a satiation for their curiosities. As a wine lover’s interests expand and their desire to learn intensifies, they begin tasting a wider variety of wines from different vineyards (or perhaps even different countries), subscribing to wine magazines, and possibly joining a couple of wine groups in order to broaden their knowledge about wine. At some point, wine tasting evolves from a hobby into a passion.
Wine lovers are patient.
As Benjamin Franklin once said, “Wine makes daily living easier, less hurried, with fewer tensions and more tolerance.” Taking these words into consideration, keep in mind that one should avoid rushing the learning process. Developing a deeper understanding of wine will undoubtedly lead to another level of appreciation for it, but it takes time to learn how to navigate all the complexities of winemaking and winetasting.
Wine lovers can be anyone.
Although wine is incredibly complicated, do not be discouraged. Mastering the art of wine is a designation that any person can earn, and the deeper one’s knowledge the more pleasurable the experience can be. Wine has always been an inherent part of different cultures and traditions across the globe, and if so many people throughout history can enjoy the drink of the gods, so can you.