This is the first in an ongoing series of articles that will help anyone who loves wine, but is intimidated by the labels. Especially French and Italian Wines. My name is Paul Mikah Thomas and I have been working with and studying Wines from around the world for thirty years. I have worked with two Master Sommeliers in this time, and am currently writing a book for the Wine novice. I want to share my experiences here in Fairfield County where I grew up.
Here I will be discussing, at least in my first few blogs, the basics of Wine, the history of Wine, and how to read a label and guide my readers to pair Wine and Food with confidence.
You may notice that I capitalize Wine and Food. This is not just because I love Wine and Food, but also because Wine and Food represent the best that life has to offer. What do I mean by this statement? Well, Food is easy to explain. Without Food, we would starve. It's as simple as that - yet I could write books and books about what that really means. I will be referring to Food as Cuisine as well. The difference between Food and Cuisine is simple; Food sustains, and Cuisine sustains the soul. Wine on the other hand - well we could live without Wine, that is certain. But for a person like me and anyone who takes the time to read my blog, Life would be much less enjoyable without Wine.
I am going to boil it down like this: there are very few things that have been with Humanity since prehistory. Wine is one of them, as well as the other fermented beverage ... Beer. Mead falls into this category, but that is another entire blog. So - Wine, Art, Bread, War, domesticated animals, and two other things I will discuss privately with whomever wants to discuss this.
First, let us understand what Wine actually is: it is grape juice; nothing more, nothing less. Grape juice. I like to call it elixir. The Blood of the grape. Blood sustains Life, and we take the Blood of the grape, let nature apply some chemical and biological reactions to it, and we have Wine. Very simple.
What is not so simple is everything else about Wine. The genetics, the strains, the agriculture, the process, and the end product all take a lot of work, Energy and knowledge. There are three main disciplines that go into the end product. The first is Viticulture. This is the study of and the science of grape cultivation. Vinification is the actual process of growing the grapes and harvesting. Bottling, well that is self explanatory.
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