Planning the perfect party -The “Artisan of Wine” Services may be the Answer for You
A story about a start-up business based on passion
By Jim Murphy – The “Artisan of Wine”
April 2, 2011
My profession is Marketing and Advertising but my Passion in Wine and Wine Parties! I love to educate people about wine and at the same time help your guests have a great time.
The following information has been complied by me after 25 years in the restaurant and wine industries and some of the observations I have made. I have worked in every type of restaurant from fast food to fine restaurants. I have also dined and made keen observations in thousands of restaurants across the USA. One restaurant where I worked in particular taught me the joys of food and wine. As I gained more knowledge about wine, my passion only grew. This is meant to be educational as well as a way to gain more appreciation for wine.
A Short History of Wine
Wine has been an integral part of society for almost 10,000 years. The Phoenicians around 4000 BC were dependent on wine for trade. The Roman Empire by far has had the largest impact on the development of viticulture and enology (the science and study of all aspects of wine and wine making). Wine was an integral part of the Roman diet. As the Roman Empire expanded so too did the wine industry. The Romans invented the first wine bottles and barrels and also saw the start of the current appellation system identifying certain regions as being better than others for growing grapes.
In the 18th Century, wine was universally used almost exclusively by the Catholic Church and as its missionary ventures expanded, wine went with it. By 1823, the missions had established themselves in Sonoma, California.
During Prohibition the wine trade was subsidized by “church wine”. As Prohibition ended, the wine industry grew and evolved into what it is today. Major improvements occurred in the 1960’s that led to advanced methods of producing higher quality wines.
How Wine is Made
The key components of wine making are soil, climate, and propagation. It normally takes 3-5 years to establish vines.
The harvest begins at varying times depending on climate, grape, and geography. Once grapes are harvested they are crushed resulting in the “must”. The must is 80% juice, 16% skins (wine pigment), 4% seeds (tannin). All juice is white, exposure to the skins and seeds imparts color and flavor. After the crush the juice is pressed and fermented. After fermentation wines are aged and/or bottled.
Wine is identified in different ways depending on the origin and type of wine. Generally, Old World wines are named by the chateau or area and negociant/grower and not by the grape. In the New World most wine is identified by the grower/winery and type of grape. Reading the label will always provide the pertinent information regarding alcohol content, vintage, type, origin and source.