Wonderful New Wine
- New Wine -

'In that day the mountains will drip new wine, and the hills will flow with milk; all the ravines of Judah will run with water. A fountain will flow out of the Lord's house and will water the valley of acacias.' Joel 3:18

The Fruit of the Vine

Carrying on the traditions of our forefathers, we participate in the annual crush every fall. Usually, we find local vendors who carry Californian fruit, and we find out when the shipment of the varieties of interest will arrive. We then try to time it so that we pick it up within hours of its arrival In this way the fruit is fresher, and reduces chances of spoilage.

As the fruit is unpacked it is washed with warm water under moderate pressure and destemmed. Each cluster is picked by hand and care is taken to separate spoilt or immature berries. The containers into which the perfect berries are kept, are sulphited to prevent stray yeasts or bacteria from infecting the freshly destemmed grapes.

Once a sufficient quantity of fruit has been prepared in this way, the crusher is readied. Pail by pail the berries are poured through the crusher into the primary fermentation vat. Thus, begins the new wine.

Links of Interest

health benefits: dementia

 Viticulture Institute,  Ontario Vintages,  Ontario Wine Route,  Napa Valley

History of Wine

Probably the first record of winemaking is from the Bible. After the flood, "Noah, a man of the soil, proceeded to plant a vineyard" (Genesis 9). And after the dramatic destruction of, and his escape from Sodom, Lot settles down in the mountains with his daughters and plants a vineyard. (Genesis 19).

So from early on in the history of humanity, wine has been there to bless the lives of the vintner, but, also to cause some to stumble in its excess. Each civilisation has attributed the mystical properties of the substance to divine origins, the Greeks and the Romans to their pantheon, and the Hebrews to JAHWEH: "He makes ... wine that gladdens the heart of man" (Psalm 104:14,15).

The Greeks felt that wine was such a wonderous substance that it warranted its own god, Dionysus. The Romans adapted his more common cult name, Bacchus.

In The Odyssey, Homer writes: "Earth is bounteous and for my people too, it brings forth grapes that thrive on the rain of Zeus and that make good wine, but this is distilled into nectar and ambrosia." Clearly, this fine substance has divine origins, with but a little help from ourselves.

Even in modern times, people still reveal their ideology through their attribution of the creation of wine. The French humanist, Victor Hugo, rejects the supernatural, saying: "God made only water, but man made wine." In effect, elevating man to a level formerly held by diety.

The wonderful wine regions of France are the skilled work of Romans in the sunset years of the Empire. On the decline of Rome, the furtherment of viticulture fell to the Christian Church. By about the 12th century most of the great vineyards of France and Germany were owned by the monastaries.

religious use of wine

Food for Thought

"Kilgore Trout once wrote a short story which was a dialogue between two pieces of yeast. They were discussing the possible purposes of life as they ate sugar and suffocated in their own excrement. Because of their limited intelligence, they never came close to guessing that they were making champagne." Kurt Vonnegut, Breakfast of Champions.

Copyright © E. J. Ritzmann.
Last Change $Date: 2002/12/21 22:05:23 $