Learn Spanish Wines Part 1

Learn Spanish Wines & Regions Part 1- History of the Spanish Wine Industry   Spain & Wine Much like the rest of Europe, the Spanish people consider wine an essential part of life and a nourishing food more so than a simple beverage. Spanish culture revolves around family, food and enjoying all that life has to offer, but at a relaxed pace. At lunch Sangria and lighter wines are served, and in the evenings fuller bodied reds and whites are served in the cafes, restaurants and homes. Ancient Times What we now know as Spain has a long and prestigious wine history. 3,000 years ago the ancient Phoenicians prized the wines of Xera (modern Jerez) and 2,000 years ago the invading Romans used their “modern” winemaking techniques to make highly sought after wines from the native varietals. Vineyards flourished under Moorish rule, but mainly for eating purposes rather than winemaking. In 1492 Spain became a united county and, as prosperity flourished, wine became an increasingly important commodity.   Modern Spain Modern Spanish winemaking really begins with the devastation of the French wine industry during the late 1860’s. Trade with America had introduced a root louse known as phylloxera to French vineyards, and the destruction of the vineyards in much of France was almost complete (especially in Bordeaux). France and the rest of the world needed a new source for their wine and nearby Spain stepped up to fill the void. An influx of capital and winemaking talent revolutionized the industry, but the goal was to make lots of good wine, not necessarily great wine. By the turn of the...